Skip to main content

We will keep fighting for all libraries - stand with us!

Full text of "Campaigns of General Custer in the North-west, and the final surrender of Sitting Bull"

See other formats


This is a digital copy of a book lhal w;ls preserved for general ions on library shelves before il was carefully scanned by Google as pari of a project 

to make the world's books discoverable online. 

Il has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one thai was never subject 

to copy right or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 

are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often dillicull lo discover. 

Marks, notations and other marginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 

publisher lo a library and linally lo you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud lo partner with libraries lo digili/e public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order lo keep providing this resource, we have taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial panics, including placing Icchnical restrictions on automated querying. 
We also ask that you: 

+ Make n on -commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request thai you use these files for 
personal, non -commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort lo Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attribution The Google "watermark" you see on each lile is essential for informing people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use. remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 

countries. Whether a book is slill in copyright varies from country lo country, and we can'l offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through I lie lull lexl of 1 1 us book on I lie web 
al |_-.:. :.-.-:: / / books . qooqle . com/| 


1 ^"7— "I 

A %^^ r */ 

iTTa 14 - 1 

jVKXP x-y'ljs ^U£i 







( - 

! *!; 












Bj^^SON, I CAVA. / V^jigJI 

Kll^t&Vf '/I 

■■ f. 
















8 Spruce Street. 









Section V. — CUS TEKS LAST RALL T 1 H 



PORTRAIT OF THE AUTHOR (Frontispiece) 2 








The object of this first venture into authorship on the part of one 
vrho, until recently, engaged in the engrossing duties of active business 
life — has had but little leisure for literary pursuits — will be readily 
apparent to the reader on a perusal of its pages. It purports to be a 
faithful portrayal of Western life, as experienced by the old settlers at 
the isolated posts and military stations on the extreme frontier, to- 
gether with a clear representation of facts concerning the treatment of 
the Indians of the plains, by the Military and Interior Departments of 
the Government 

The author, heretofore a stranger to the reading public, deems it not 
amiss to introduce himself to his readers by stating that, when the 
war of the [Rebellion broke out, in 1861, he was a conductor on the 
Missouri Pacific Railroad, having followed that profession since he 
was twenty-one years of age. 

In 1862, just after the siege of Corinth, a request was made from the 
Army of the Tennessee for experienced men and officers to take imme- 
diate charge of the immense transportation. The writer proceeded to 
Corinth, Miss., and was assigned to duty at Jackson, Tenn., the 
lamented Major-General James B. McPherson being his immediate 
superior officer up to the siege of Vicksburg, when, in 1863, just be- 
fore the surrender of that almost impregnable city, he was captured 
by the regular Confederate forces, under E. Kirby Smith, whose head- 
quarters were at Shreveport, La. It was soon noised about his 
quarters that the prisoner had taken a prominent part in railroad 
management, and the transportation connected with the army under 
Grant, McPherson and Sherman, and it was decided to banish him so 
far out of the way that he would not be able to render any further 
service to the Union cause during the war. His sentence was banish- 
ment into Old Mexico, not to return during the war, under penalty of 
death. The sentence, however, was not read to the writer until he, 
with his guard, had reached the banks of the Rio Grande, at old Fort 
Duncan, opposite Predas Nadres, in Old Mexico. He was then thrown 
across the river among the Greasers, and found himself the only man 
in that whole section of country who could speak the American 


To reach home again — ever the first thought of the exile — two routes 
were available, and to decide which of them was the less dangerous, 
was an intensely interesting question. The wild Apache Indians at 
that time were marauding through that portion of Old Mexico, and 
rendered equally hazardous the northern route through New Mexico, 
to the seaboard, or the southeasterly to the Gulf of Mexico via Mon- 
terey and Matamoras. He, at length, decided to take the latter, the 
distance being about four hundred miles to Monterey, and at once set- 
out on foot on his forlorn trip, sustained and upheld by the faint 
glimmer of a hope that his weary steps, in time, would reach a friendly 
haven, from whence he might communicate with his far-off northern 

Winding his solitary way through the unbroken chain of the Rocker 
Mountains, toward the gates of Monterey, the vision of this home, 
with the loving wife and little daughter who there awaited him, shone 
clear and resplendent through the darkness of his gloomy situation, 
and saved him from despair. Onward he struggled, through the- 
dreary mountain fastnesses, whose sombre landscape views were un- 
relieved save by here and there a lone palmetto tree, or the rude head- 
board of a solitary grave, enclosing the mortal remains of some white 
wanderer, who had been slain by the wild Apache Indians, or assassin- 
ated by the merciless Mexican banditti. Day by day he neared the 
wished-for haven, and at length discerned the welcome gates of Mon- 
terey. Arrived at this city, he sought the American Consul, who sent 
him to Matamoras, and from thence, by man-of-war, to New Orleans, 
where General Banks took charge of him and sent him up the river 
to Vicksburg. 

Suffice it, for the purposes of this brief history, to say that in 1867 
the author proceeded to Kansas and engaged in a general mercantile 
business, a portion of the time being engaged in trade with the wild 
Kiowa and Comanche tribes of Indians. From that time, until re- 
cently, he has been engaged on the extreme frontier, in trading with 
army people, immigrants, settlers and Indians. 

His opportunities for observation among these classes of people have 
been unlimited, and the thought long ago impressed itself upon his 
mind, that a work of the present nature, presenting truthful sketches 
of Western life and character, would possess intrinsic value in itself, 
and be a mine of information to the large body of people in our country, 
who have not yet beheld that social wonderland of America. — the great. 

J. E. W., 


General Van Oouvnor and a Peace Commissioner Subju- 
gating the Wild Kiowas and Comanches near the. 
Wichita Mountains. 


An Indian Agency. — Mr. Jonathan Broadbrim assumes the dvr 
ties as Indian Agent, and introduces himself to theleading war 

One of the most interesting of the oft-recurring farces 
that characterize the dealings of the government with the 
untutored savages, is the so-called Peace Commission. As 
a faithful picture of the frequent " pow-wow," or peace cere- 
mony — "Big Talkee" as the Indians style it in their graphic 
language — is adduced the following truthful colloquy, that 
occurred at the Washita River Indian Agency, between Jon- 
athan Broadbrim, Agent of the Comanches and Kiowas, on 
the part of the Government, and Satanta, Lone Wolf, and 
Kickingbird, leading chiefs of the Kiowa tribes. The con- 
versation, as carried on through an interpreter, is given 
almost verbatim, and furnishes a fair illustration of the pe- 
culiar mode of dealing with the Indians, adopted by the 
Government, together with the usual result of such treat- 
ment : 


Agent. Friends, I am here to-day to hear your requests, 
to listen to your complaints, and to devise means for your 

Satanta. How ; how ; big white chief, how ? Heap-o'- 
talkee to-day. Heap-o'-talkee and no good. Heap-o'-talkee> 



me to-day. White folks talkee heap and no good. Me sava, 
me heap-o'-sava, and no good. 

Agent. Well, Satanta, I have been sent here by the 
United States Government, to see if aDything can be done 
for you and your tribes in the way of having all of you set- 
tle on a reservation of your own, such as may be allotted 
to you by our Government. We would like to have you 
settle down with your people, and take hold of farming and 
raising stock ; at the same time have your children go to 

Satanta. How much land and how many cattle will you 
give us, and not much talkee about it ? 

Agent. I am instructed to say that we will build good 
school-houses, and also as many houses as may be needed 
for all of your families to live in. We will set aside a quan- 
tity of land for your people to live on, and will furnish 
farming tools, and all the corn and potatoes they may want 
to plant, and will send them a good farmer to show them 

Satanta. Where is the land you talkee so much about ? 
We want to know where it is ? 

Agent We will select the farms for your tribes up and 
•down this valley, where you will have plenty of water 
and wood, and most, an excellent place to shelter your stock 
in the winter. 

Satanta. How is it that you white folks own this land ? 
We have always lived here and made our hunting-grounds 
up and down the Washita, and no one ever disturbed us 
until you pale-faces came here with your soldiers. The 
land is all ours, and always has been. 

Agent. We claim the lands all around here by our pur- 
chase ; but we will set aside as much as you want for your 
tribes. I would like to have you and your people talk the 
matter over among yourselves, and I earnestly hope we can 
make some arrangement so that the result will be greatly to 
your interest and improve the future welfare of your peo- 
ple, and save a great deal of trouble and expense to our 
Oovernment, as well as for yourselves. I would like to hear 
your views, and want to hear your chiefs and warriors talk. 


Satanta. I heard the great father at Washington wanted 
me to come here and have a big talkee with his agent. You 
pale-faces say you always want peace. You send your sol- 
diers here to fight and make peace. My brave warriors 
fight, and your soldiers fight; and I tell you one thing now, 
that as long as you send your soldiers here to fight, you 
may expect my braves to fight back again. My braves are 
all young men, and will keep a-fighting the pale-faces until 
they keep away from our hunting-grounds. 

Agent But, Satanta, we propose to allow your people to 
hunt all they want to. We don't want to disturb your 

Satanta. Only a little while ago— may-be-so-four-years, 
may-be-so-six-years — we lived on the plains in Kansas, and 
my people were all well-to-do-and-a-heap-o'-good-all-the- 
time. We had a heap-o'-buffalo-and-antelope to hunt and 
kill, and make-a-heap-o'-meat for our squaws and papooses. 
We had a-heap-o'-good times. Heap-o'-good-pale-faced-men 
come out to us and made heap-o' -good-agents. 

Agent. We think we send you good men for your agents 
now. What is the matter with them ? 

Satanta. In those good old days the pale-faced agents 
were good. Our goods and clothing were brought to us 
every spring and fall on a-heap -big- wagons-all- the-time- 
with-heap-big-horses. We had a-heap-o'-buffalo-robes for 
the swap-chief, and our squaws and papooses had plenty 
of blankets, calico, sugar, and coffee. All was heap good. 
They all the time had a-heap-o'-good clothes to wear, and-a- 
heap-o'-good things to eat. My braves, squaws and papooses 
heap-o'-good all the time. Young men hunt buffalo, and 
squaws make-a-heap-good-buffalo-robes, and-make-a-heap- 

Agent. I see no reason why you cannot do the same now. 
We try to send good men for agents, and appoint a good 
class of teachers for you. If there is anything wrong I 
want to know it, and will try to make it right. 

Satanta. May-be-so-two-years, may-be-so-four-years-ago, 
the white man has cared nothing about the treaties he has 
signed with us. The pale-faces have acted as if they never 


had signed any treaty at all. Our goods and clothing, that 
ought to have been here last October, are not here yet, and 
it is now in the moon of-two-moons (February). 

Agent. Tour annuity goods are now on the way, and, I 
think, will be here in a very few days. 

Satanta. It was just the same slow way last year and the 
year before ; our squaws and papooses would suffer to-day, 
only my young braves are able to find a few buffalo, which 
gives them meat to keep them frdm being hungry, and robes, 
to cover their naked bodies. The pale-faces have advanced 
on the red-man, and driven the buffalo and antelope away,, 
so that our young men can hardly find enough meat to feed 
our squaws and papooses. 

Agent. I think there is plenty of pork, bacon, and corned 
beef in the storehouse. It really seems to me there is no 
need of your people going hungry. 

Satanta. No good ; no good ; no like 'em. Pale-face-eat- 
'em-a-heap — red-man-no-eat-'em. No good. Bed-man and 
squaws like heap-o'-buffalo-and-antelope-full-o' -blood. The 
white man has all the time been talkee-peace-peace-heap-o'- 
talkee-heap-o'-talkee-and-no-peace. I tell you now there 
will be no peace until the white man does as he agrees, and 
when he signs a treaty with our tribes he must make his. 
word good. 

Agent I think there will be no trouble about that. I 
think we can make a treaty that will be satisfactory to all 

Satanta We have been driven four hundred miles from 
our hunting-grounds in Kansas and we have no peace yet. 
It looks to me as if you might go up and help that wagon 
train along that has been on the road all winter, trying to 
get here. You smart pale-faced men know a-heap-better to 
put oxen on wagons in the winter when such-a-big-snow on 
the ground. Why not put mules and horses on the wagons 
and get here sometime before the grass grows in the spring? 
Bad men. No good. Pale-face-man-no-caree. No good. 

Agent I hope you know, Satanta, that we all have more 
or less trouble in moving over the plains in the winter, and 
when there is snow on the ground. 


Satanta. I have had hard work to keep my young men 
from going out to meet those wagons and killing, the oxen 
for beef, and taking the goods out of the wagons and giving 
them to the squaws and papooses, and then burn the wagons 
to make a hot fire and make hot coffee and hot tea and roast 
the oxen for a heap-o'-good-supper for Kiowas. 

Agent. Then we would have to send our soldiers out after 
you. That kind of conduct is just what makes our soldiers 
fight you. 

Satanta. Then my braves will fight back again. My braves 
were made to fight your soldiers, and before we make any 
more treaties with you pale-faces, you must have your 
wagon men bring our goods here in better time, and you 
must keep the old treaties good. The old treaties are good 
enough for the red-man and the squaws and papooses. All 
we want is you pale-faces to keep them good and have less 
talkee about it, and you must stop your young men from 
killing our buffalo and antelope for fun. 

Agent. I will talk this matter over with my people and see 
what can be done. I think myself they ought to stop killing 
the buffalo for fun. I think you are justified in that com- 
plaint, and I will give it my attention. 

Satanta. You have driven us from our homes and hunting- 
grounds in Kansas, you may drive us from here away across 
the staked plains into old Mexico ; your soldiers may fight 
my braves and your big general may put irons all over me 
again, but the big red chiefs will always talkee, heap-o'- 
talkee, and our brave warriors will always fight, until the 
pale-faces do as they agree when they sign a treaty with us. 

Agent. I will confess that I am very sorry such delays 
have occurred in shipping your supplies in here, and I am 
satisfied it has been quite a serious annoyance to you and 
your people, as well as to ourselves, and I will make it my 
business to report these delays to the proper parties, and 
will in the future have your supplies shipped in better 
time. I will further state that we will hereafter send men 
who will see that your wants are more promptly and prop- 
erly cared for. We think the delay has been on account of 
the bad weather and the inactivity of the freighters, and the 


blame should by no means be placed upon the agent. Trr e 
are ready and willing to do anything that is consistent and 
just to make good to you and your people any damages that 
have occurred. I would like to have you talk with your 
young men about farming and raising cattle and sheep, and 
to-morrow I will meet you here with two more white broth- 
ers, and we will have another good talk. 

Satanta. It is no use to bring any more pale-faces here 
to talk. What we want is white men to do as they agree. 
My brave warriors will fight and you may send your dog 
soldiers here to fight them, and your big general can put 
irons all over my body again, and then he can go back and 
tell all the pale-faces you have got that the red- man of the 
plains will never, never surrender, but will always fight un- 
til the great father at Washington makes his pale-faces do 
as they agree. I am the big chief of the Kiowa tribes, but 
I am only one man, and I want my young chiefs and war- 
riors to say something. Lone Wolf and Kickingbird are the 
chief warriors in the Kiowa tribes, and I want them to make 
their own talk. They can talkee all they please. 

Lone Wolf. I have but little to say. I am a poor red-man, 
with nothing but my squaw and papoose and my three 
ponies. The pale-faced men have-a-bijg-heap-of-everything. 
The red-man can never learn as much as the white knows. 
I would like to have our people settle down here where the 
water runs clear and the timber grows tall. I think our 
women, would raise corn and potatoes and we would have 
our children go to school. 

Agent That is just what we want to have them do, and we 
will do all we can to assist them. 

Lone Wdf. If your white people will do what is right and 
have good hearts for us, I think our tribes will do well for 
you. I have been on the war-path for thirty years and am 
tired of it. The white people have got more soldiers than 
we have, and I know it. We must give up the war-path 
sooner or later, but we must have good treatment and the 
pale-faces must stay away from our hunting-grounds and 
let our buffalo and antelope grow as they always did. 

Agent. If your people will settle on a reservation they 
will have plenty of cattle and will not need any buffalo. 



: Lone Wolf. The buffalo and antelope were put on the 
grass for the red-man, and we must have them. If the great 
father at Washington will keep his pale-face soldiers away 
from us, I will try and have our people settle on farms and 
raise corn, potatoes, oxen and sheep and a heap-o'-cows. I 
would like to hear what Kickingbird has to say. He is a 
brave young warrior and-a-heap-good-young-chief. He is a 
heap-big-fighter with the pale-faces when they come for our 
buffalo and antelope. 

Agent. We would all like to hear from you, Kickingbird. 
.What have you to say ? I think you ought to have a good 
influence with your people. 

Kickingbird. I am a brave young chief in the Kiowa tribes. 
I have nothing but my squaw and papoose and three ponies. 
I want to live with my people and look at them and see them 
do well. We have been fought by your big generals a heap- 
o'-times and are not dead yet, and we don't want to fight any 
more. We want the white soldiers to stay away from us, 
and we will take care of ourselves. I want to go to Wash- 
ington and have a big talkee-a-heap-big-a-talkee with the 
great father. I want him to give me some cattle and sheep. 
I want to raise oxen, cows, and hogs and sheep, and hire 
our young men to make corn and potatoes. 

Agent. That is just what we want to have you do, Kick- 
ingbird, and we will do all we can to help you along. I 
think you would make a good farmer. 

Kickingbird. I think I can make a heap good farmer. My 
squaw can live like a white woman, and my papoose must 
go to school and learn to read and write and come home and 
learn the other children, like the white folks do. But we are 
never going to do all this while your pale-faces stay around 
us and kill our buffalo for fun. They must stay away and 
let our braves alone and stop killing the buffalo and ante- 
lope, and then we will believe the white man will do what 
is right and the Kiowas will all be good people. 

Agent I will do the best I can to have you go to Wash- 
ington, where you can talk with the great father. I will do 
all I can to help you get cattle and sheep and be a good 
farmer. We will build you good houses for your people to 


live in, and school-houses for your children, and send you a 
good teacher. Our soldiers will not disturb you as long as 
you keep your young men at home and are a good law- 
abiding people. 

Kickingbird. All is good. Heap good. Heap-o'-good- 
talkee. You-pale-face-talkee-a-heap-o'-good. All-time- heap- 
good. May-be-so-mee-yan-na-me-come-and-a-heap-o'-talkee- 
more-a-heap-o'-good. Good-bye. Good-bye. 

[All shake hands. 


Galled upon to assist — An unexpected drama. 

Quite different was the scene enacted on the following day 
At the military post in the vicinity. While Satanta and 
his associate chiefs were engaged in " peace talk " with the 
unsuspecting agent, the wily warriors of the tribe had felt 
it a befitting occasion to steal forth on a raiding expedition, 
in which they securely bagged the mules of the post quar- 
termaster's department. At the same time news was re- 
ceived at the post that the same warriors, in a raid into 
Texas, had killed a worthy settler, and carried off his wife 
and children as prisoners, as is the custom of the Kiowas, 
expecting a liberal ransom for their surrender. The scene 
opens with the sentinels of the post, who proclaim the 
usual hourly "AWs well" Agent Broadbrim, on hearing of 
the occurrence, repairs in haste to the military headquarters 
in the interests of peace. 

The Indian attack, as is usual with them, was made at 
daybreak, as the herd was being driven out to grass. The 
herder, Squills, rushes to the post nearest the carrol, to give 
the alarm. The sentry is found asleep at his post, but 
awakes to the emergency of the case, in time to arouse the 
corporal of the relief guard. 

Post No. 2, Sentinel. Twelve o'clock, and all is well. Post 
No. 1. 


Post No. 2. Twelve o'clock, and all is well. Post No. 2. 

Post No. 3. Twelve o'clock, and all is well. Post No. 3. 

Herder [excited]. Corporal of the guard ! Corporal of the 
guard ! Get out here ! The Indians are running off the 
mules ! Get out here ! All the mules are captured by the 
Indians ! 

Corporal. Hallo, Squills ! what's the matter with the 
mules? Wha-wha- what's the matter, anyway ? Say ! See 
here, old pard ; don't for heaven's sake report me for being 
asleep ! 

Squills. Oh, that's all right, old pard. You know I'm all 
O. K. on that score. We'll all keep mum. You know mum 
is the word with us old veterans. 

Corporal. Yes, you know how it is yourself, old pard. I'll 
run up to headquarters and report Blast the dirty red- 
skins, I wish they would make their steal on us in the day^ 
time, when we are awake. This hunting after Injuns at mid^ 
night is no good joke for soldiers. [Corporal of the guard 
hastens to the commandants quarters to give the alarm. 

General. Hallo ! Who is there ? What do you want ? 

Corporal. General, the Indians have made a raid on the 
mule corral, and run off the herd, just as it was going out 
to graze. 

General. How do you know they were Indians. Do you 
know certainly whether they were Indians or white men ? 
Ring that bell for my orderly. 

Corporal. All I know, General, is what the herder said. 
He called the guard, and said the Indians had captured the 

General. Do you know, Corporal, whether the herder was 
awake or asleep when this happened ? 

Corporal. He was certainly awake, General, when he 
called me. 

General. Orderly! [Orderly appears.] Call the Drum- 
Major, and have him beat the long-roll, and get my field 
horse and orderly here quick. [Exit Orderly.] Corporal, 
go and call the Indian scouts, and have them mounted at 
once. [Exit Corporal. 


Re-enter Orderly. 

Orderly. General, your field horse and orderly are wait- 
ing at the door. 

General. I will leave matters with you for a while, adju- 
tant. [Exit General. 

Enter Mr. Broadbrim. 

Adjutant Good morning, Mr. Broadbrim. Be seated, sir. 
We had a little raid on our mules last night. I thought 
those Indians acted and talked like peace at your council 

Mr. B. I really thought so myself. Did thee think they 
would act in this manner on such short notice ? 

Adjutant. Well, I will tell you, Mr. Broadbrim, we must 
expect more or less of this kind of trouble. Those wild, 
thieving fellows have never been punished very severely yet. 

Mr. B. Don't thee think we can make peace without fight- 
ing? You know it is bad to bring war upon ourselves. 
Don't thee think so ? 

Adjutant. Yes, I know war is bad : but we must give those 
fellows a good, sound thrashing, and teach them to behave 

Mr. B. Dost thee think the General will have to fight 
them to-day ? 

Adjutant. He will surely give them a fight if he catches 
them. That is just what he intends to do. 

Mr. B. I am really sorry ; I thought I would be able to 
arrange some kind of terms for peace, in a day or two. 
[Rising to go.] I will be over again, and see what will have 
to be done. [Exit. 

Enter Captain Winecoop, officer of the day. • 

Adjutant. Well, Captain Winecoop, how is the garrison 
this morning ? All quiet since the raid on the mules ? 

Capt. TV. Well, if I don't think that was the finest piece 
of strategy that I have seen in a long time. It was a most 
successful game played on the part of the red-skins. 

Adjutant. What was it, Captain? let us hear. 

Capt. W. Why, don't you know the Broadbrim agent held 


a sort of a peace council yesterday, over oh the Washita 
Biver, and all the while he was entertaining them, and mak- 
ing propositions for peace with old Satanta, their young 
warriors were getting ready to steal the mules. 

Adjutant I am satisfied in my own mind, and I think all 
of our military men are of the same opinion, that we never 
will have any peace until we give those warriors & good 
whipping, and make them stay on a reservation, and take 
their ponies away from them. 

Capt. W. That is just what we have got to do. That is 
General Van Couvner's plan, and he openly and boldly says 
so. [Enter Mb. Littlejohn, a citizen of Texas.] Be seated, 
sir ; what is the news down in Texas ? 

Mr. L. We have had plenty of news down thar ; an' most 
horrid news it is for us citizens: The young Kiowas war 
down thar yesterday, mounted on theer fleetest ponies, an' 
run off a lot uv fine blooded horses, an' killed one honest 
settler, an' tuk his wife an' two children, an' tied all three 
of 'em on a mule tha'd stole uv nabor Peppersnapps, an' 
then put 'em 'tween two big buck Injuns, who'd whip the mule 
first from one side an' then from tuther, an' kep' the mule a 
kickin', an' a snortin', an' a howlin' as if the hid Texas cav- 
alry wer' arter 'em. They kep' up a big laugh an' a hollerin' 
all the while, an' thur fleet ponies was a runnin' thur best 
speed, an' I can tell yer, Capt'in, 'twas a horrid sight to 
look on-to. 

Adjutant. It seems as though the Indians selected yester- 
day and last night to make their raid. They run off sixty- 
five mules from our herd last night, and the General is out 
after them now. You can see him when he returns, and he 
will render you and your citizens in Texas all the assistance 
in his power. 

Mr. L. [rising to go.] I cen tell yer, Mr. Capt'in, if sum- 
thin' ain't done to keep them ar savages away from our set- 
tlers in Texas, we'll turn our Bangers on-to 'em with our 
shot-guns, and we'll pepper 'em clean through the Brazos tu 
the Gulf of Mexico, an' will niver let one on 'em cum back 
here alive ; now you may 'pend on thai Good-bye ; I'll 
see the Gin'ral when he comes. [Exit Mb. L. 


Enter General. 

Adjutant Well, General, what success? 

General. Not any success ; the pesky red-skins had too 
much the start of us. 

Adjutant. A citizen from Texas came in to-day and reported 
the Kiowas had been down there and killed one man and 
captured his wife and two children, and tied them on a 
mule, and forced it to run and keep up with their fleet 
ponies, and also stole a lot of fine blooded horses. 

General. I heard they had made a raid there. The fact 
is, the whole Kiowa tribes have got to be surrounded, and 
the leading chiefs and warriors have got to be whipped. 
They may have peace councils, and smooth talk, and build 
school-houses ; but I can tell them the warriors have got 
to be made to stay on their reservations, and stop this mur- 
dering and horse-stealing. [Enfer Mr. Broadbrim.] Good 
morning, Mr. Broadbrim. How are your pet Indians pro- 
gressing in the way of farming and going to school ? 

Mr. B. Well, I don't know why we can't make a complete 
success of it. The leading chiefs were at the council yester- 
day, and expressed a very strong desire to settle on farms 
and have their children go to school. 

General Did you hear about the raid they made in Texas 
yesterday ? 

Mr. B. Yes, sir. I hardly know what to do in the prem- 
ises. Could thee make some suggestions in the case ? 

General. Yes, sir ; when my cavalry returns I will go out 
and surround the whole tribe, and make them surrender 
that woman and her two children, or else whip them right 
then and there, on the ground. 

Mr. B. But you know it would be cruel for thee to bring 
a on a war ! 

General. We either want to do that, or take six leading 
chiefs and hold them as hostages, and then, if they refuse 
to surrender the captives, we will hang three of the chiefs, 
and make the warriors select which three they prefer to 
have hung. That is my way of handling Indians when they 
commence murdering men and capturing women and chil- 


Mr. B. But, G-eneral, I believe I can persuade them to 
bring in the captives for a small sum of money, or some 
goods in lieu thereof. 

General. You may possibly ransom them for a good round 
price ; but it is a dangerous policy to pursue. My plan is, 
subjugation by whipping them — that is, if they persist in 
going on the war-path. 

Mr. B. I will talk with the three leading chiefs when they 
come for rations, and see what can be done. 

[Exit Mr. Broadbrim. 

Enter General's Wife. 

Wife. What pleases you, my dear ? How is it that you 
are so good-natured all at once ? Have the Kiowas done 
something to please you ? 

General. No ; but their school-teacher has. He is begin- 
ning to teach school among them before we can stop them 
from murdering and horse-stealing. 

Adjutant [laughingly]. I think Mr. Broadbrim is a good 
man, and means all for the best ; and will, in the outcome, 
make a very good Indian agent. 

Wife. Why, yes ; you know he has been here but a few 
weeks, and has had very little opportunity to get acquainted 
with them. You officers that have been in the service here 
for years, have learned their ways, and know better how to 
manage them. 

General. I think he is making splendid progress with his 
new acquaintances. As Governor Wise would say, " I don't 
think he has been properly introduced." While he was 
introducing himself among the leading war chiefs at the 
council, the young .warriors were on one of their regular 
tours of rapine and murder. Their system of brigandage has 
been tolerated too long, and they must be made to desist. 
The fact is, I will have to take the cavalry and give them a 
good thrashing. 

Enter Mr. Broadbrim. 

Mr. B. General, Satanta, Lone Wolf, and Kickingbird are 
at the agency, for the purpose of drawing their rations, and 
I think it will be well to make them a proposition to bring 

22 • subj 


in that woman and her two children they hold as cap- 
tives ; also, to bring in those mules. What dost thee think 
about it ? 

General. All the proposition you want to make to them 
is, that they will get no more rations for themselves nor 
their tribes, and they may look for a fight at any time, if 
they refuse to surrender that woman and her children, and 
drive back those mules they stole. Tell them you will with- 
hold their rations until they comply with your demands. 
You never want to propose to the Indians ; you must always 
make a formal demand, and then make them comply. That 
is the easiest and the quickest way to settle matters with 

Mr. B. Dost thee think, General, I had better have the 
leading chiefs come in and talk with thee ? Dost thee think 
thee can have a better impression upon their untutored 
minds ? 

General. We don't want to simply make an impression, we 
must make them comply with every demand that we may be 
pleased to make upon them. That policy rigidly enforced 
will soon settle the Indian troubles. They never will want 
whipping but once, you may depend. 

Mr. B. All right. I will go and invite the chiefs here, to 
confer with thee. [Exit 

General. Now we shall have a renewal of the farce. But 
I, for one, am resolved upon stern measures to force com- 
plete compliance on the part of the Indians with our de- 




General Van Couvnor's Headquarters — Conference with leading 

Warriors — The Denouement 

Agent Broadbrim, the conscientious devotee of peace 
measures, was so far successful in his mission of good will 
toward the recreant savages as to induce three influential 
chiefs, Ten Bears, White Bear and Dogtail, to return with 
him and hold a conference at the military headquarters with 
the commandant of the post. As usual, the old chiefs place 
the blame upon the young warriors, whom they claim they 
cannot control, and deny all responsibility in an affair that 
they regret only in so far as it may imperil the certainty of 
their rations. The matter ends with a display of force on 
the part of the military, and the subsequent ransom of the 
unhappy captives, who are restored unharmed to their 
friends. The conference is opened in the usual way by the 
agents, the interpreter being present to explain to each 
party the (to them) unknown language of the other. 

Mr. B. General, I have prevailed upon these three chiefs 
to come and have a talk with thee in regard to those cap- 
tives and stolen mules. 

Ten Bears. We did not know our young men were going 
to steal mules. 

White Bear. I was at the big talkee on the Washita. I 
didn't know our young men were going out. They have 
Acted very bad, and we big chiefs don't like it. 

General. Well, Dogtail, what can you say for yourself? 
Can you explain how it is that your young men go out and 
murder and steal mules and horses ? 

Dogtail. We can't always keep our young men at home. 
Sometimes they act bad and we can't help it. The white 
men kill our buffalo and antelope, and then our warriors go 
off and act bad, and we can't help it. 

General. Will you bring in that woman and her two chil- 
dren all safe in ten days ? 

Dogtail. May-be-so. If you make our hearts good I think 
ure can. Our hearts must be made good. 


Mr. B. I think we can make your hearts good if you will 
bring them in without any trouble. 

General. If you will make your men bring in that woman 
and her two children and those stolen mules and horses 
within ten days I will keep my cavalry away from your 
tribes. If they are not here in ten days I will make a fight 
for them. Now do you understand what I say ? 

Dogtail. I think we can get them. You must make our 
hearts glad when we do. May-be-so-a-heap-good. Heap- 

General. I tell you, Mr. Broadbrim, they are a hard set. 
There is one thing that ought to be done. The proper 
authorities should restrain the pleasure-hunters from killing 
the buffalo for mere sport. Whenever we have trouble with 
any of the tribes they invariably bring up that excuse. 
Some action ought to be taken, and I think it comes within 
the compass of your office. 

Mr. B. I hope we will be able to manage them without 
any trouble. As the last resort, General, I will have to send 
for thee and thy cavalry. It may produce a good effect. 

General. We have but one policy to pursue, and that is to 
stand firm. I think by stopping their rations we will gain 
our point. However, if you want my troops to help at any 
time, let me know. I am at your service with my whole 

Mr. B. Thanks, General. If I need your services I will 
send a courier. Good day. [Exit Mr. B. and Indians. An 
hour later a Courier arrives. 

Courier. Here is a request from Mr. Broadbrim. He wants 
you to send troops at once. 

General. Just as I expected. He says he wants troops to 
protect the public property. Yes, I see. Orderly, call 
Captain Beardslee. Adjutant, make an order to Captain 
Beardslee to report with his troop to Mr. Broadbrim at the 
Indian Agency. He is not to use force of arms only to pro- 
tect the lives of persons and property. 

Enter Captain Beardslee. 

Captain, move your troop quietly over to the agency, and 
use your best judgment in rendering the agent such protec- 


tion as he may require. The object of this move is to secure 
a surrender of that woman and her two children. 

Capt B. Very well, General ; good day. [Exit. 

General. I anticipate some trouble before we get hold of 
those captives. Now, if neighbor Broadbrim will only stand 
firm, and not weaken himself into a ransom, we will recover 
that woman and her children. It is a good plan to send 
Beardslee there with his troop. 

Enter the General's Wife. 

Wife. I noticed a troop of cavalry moving out towards 
the Indian camp. Is there anything the matter with the 
warriors ? 

General. No, there is no outbreak. We are trying to re- 
cover that Texas woman and her children. They have them 
over at the agency, and neighbor Broadbrim expressed some 
fears in regard to the safety of property, and I ordered out 
a troop of cavalry. 

Wife [laughingly]. Why in the world don't you go over 
yourself ? Why do you leave neighbor Broadbrim to take 
hold of such an important matter ? You know how ugly 
those wild fellows are when they are about to surrender 
anything they have once captured. Come, go along over, 
and I will go with you. I want to seo those poor captives. 

General. I have no objections to going over ; but I was 
rather inclined to think that neighbor Broadbrim would pre- 
fer to make his own arrangements concerning the captives. 

Wife. Well, you can go over with me. .1 want to see if 
that woman and her children are in want of anything to 
make them comfortable. The ladies in the garrison are 
prepared to assist in making clothing, and to help take care 
of them. 

[The General and his Wife repair to the Indian Agency 
Buildings, and witness the close of the f (Mowing conference be- 
tween Agent Broadbrim and the chiefs — the conversation, as 
usual, being carried on through the interpreter.'] 

Mr. B. [to Indians.] Be seated, and let us hear what thee 
has to say. Are thee well ? Dost thee feel tired ? 

3 Chiefs [each one gives a grunt, and says,] How, how ? 


Mr. B. Well, what has thee to say about those captives 
and mules ? 

Dog Tail. Well, Mr. Calico Chief, we have got your Texas 
squaw and her papooses for you. Now what are you going 
to do to make our hearts glad ? 

Mr. B. Thee can deliver the captives to Captain Beards- 
lee, who will take good care of them, and I will issue thee 
thy rations. 

Dog Tail. We want money, blankets, and calico; our 
hearts will then be-a-heap-good. 

Mr. B. I have no money for you, and I must have the wo- 
man and children. How about the mules you promised to 
•bring in? 

Dog Tail We have got most all the mules. Our young 
men sold only a few of them. We want twelve hundred 
dollars for Texas squaw and her papooses, and the mules. 
May-be-so-thirty-may-be-so-forty-mules. Braves sold some. 

Mr. B. I want that woman and her two children at once. 
Captain Beardslee will proceed to surround your tribe, un- 
less thee comply with my request instanter. Subito, in- 

Dog Tail. I want to have a-heap-big-talkee with the other 
big chief, and will come in men-yan-na and let you know. 

Mr. B. Captain Beardslee, will thee please take such 
steps as will secure possession of those captives at once ? I 
shall not trifle any longer. 

Capt B. Orderly, sound the bugle for the troop to dis- 
mount and get in* position. 

[Bugler sounds the call Indians and squaws run to rear of 
Agent's office. Troop files in, Captain Beabdslee at the head, 
with drawn sabre. Indians string their bows in great exciter 
merit. Dog Tail manifests great anger. Bloodshed seems immi- 

Mr. B. Now I demand those captives at once. 

Capt. B. We will not dilly-dally one moment. Give us 
the captives at once, or I will take every one of you to the 
guard-house. Every one of you unstring your bows, and 
keep your arrows in the quivers. 

[The General enters, with Ms Wife on his arm. His presence 9 
in a measure, quiets the disturbance. The captives are brought 


forward, and received kindly by the General's Wife, who leads 
them away. Indians grunt and unstring their bows. Dog Tail 
shakes hands heartily with the General.] 

Dog Tail. Big white chief heap good. Heap-a-good-chuck- 
Calico- chief -no-good, no-good. Heap-bad-medicine. 

Mr. B. Now I want the mules your young men run off the 
other night. 

Dog Tail. May-be-so-me-yan-na-me-bring-a-heap-o'-mules. 
Young men got 'em on the grass. May-be-so-one-day-may- 
be-so-two-days-me-come, heap-o'-mides. 

Mr. B. Captain Beardslee will hold six of thy men until 
thee make thy young men bring in the mules. 

Dog Tail. We want six hundred dollars in money, and 
then we will bring in the mules. We have made your hearts 
glad with the white squaw and papooses, and now you 
must make our hearts glad with money We will bring 
the mules to-morrow, sure, and all the time be good In- 
dians, if you will give us six hundred dollars. I don't want 
it all myself. Squaws and papooses get it to swap for 
blankets, calico, sugar, and coffee. 

Mr. B. What say thee, General, in regard to this demand 
from Dog Tail ? Will thee be satisfied ? 

General I have no objections to giving them something for 
their services in helping us to get our mules back. I think 
it will be well enough to give it to them when they return 
the mules. I am of the same opinion now that I have 
always entertained — it is a very bad policy to pursue. It 
only helps to perpetuate the ransom-traffic between our- 
selves and the wild tribes. 

Mr. B. Well, Dog Tail, you have been a very good Indian 
to-day, and I will give each of you three chiefs two hundred 
dollars if you will bring in those mules. I have no money, 
but will give you orders on the trader, and he will let you 
have what you want. Now you must bring the mules in ten 

Dog Tail. Oh, yes ; me have my young men bring in heap-o'- 
mules. Me-give-'em-to-big- white-chief. Heap-good-mules- 
and-heap-o'-good-big-white-chief. Good-bye, good-bye. 

[Shakes hands all around. 






The Record j rom 1868. 

With the incidents of the memorable Indian fight of June 
25th, 1876, between Lieut. -Colonel G. A. Custer, with five 
companies of the 7th Cavalry, and Sitting Bull, the invinci- 
ble chief of the lawless hordes of hostile Indians who infest 
the north-west plains, the world is already familiar. Scarcely 
yet can the American people contemplate with calmness the 
wholesale butchery of a brave officer of the cavalry service, to- 
gether with nearly three hundred men of his command. The 
gallant struggle of the doomed battalion, enclosed in that 
living cordon of wild and yelling savages, from which none 
escaped to tell the story of their fate, is without parallel in 
the history of the western world. 

The tale of their dashing onset, their reckless charge into 
overwhelming numbers of merciless foes, their glorious stand 
when hope was gone, their valorous defense, and death, sub- 
limely courted in the charge and on the skirmish line, has been 
told and re-told. Never, while the world stands, will be forgot- 
ten the tragic fate of the chivalrous three hundred, who fell 
with their gallant leader on that bloody field of unequal 
strife. History has recorded imperishably the grandeur of 
their final charge. Their dauntless death is celebrated in 
song and story. Their names are household words in every 
home, and their memory is embalmed forever in the grateful 
admiration of their countrymen. 

But of the minor events that form the links in the length- 

major-general george a. custer. 


ened chain of circumstances that led to the final result, and 
brought about the bloody catastrophe, little is known to the 
general public. To present these minor facts in concise 
form is the object of these pages. To that end we shall state 
succinctly : First. The operating causes that led to the war 
with the Sioux and their allies, and which culminated in the 
sending out by the Government of the expedition of 1876 ; 
and secondly, the occurrences by which Lieutenant-Colonel 
G. A. Custer incurred the bitter enmity of the Indian war- 
rior Rain-in-the-Face — who slew him on his final battle-field 
— and which led to the outpouring of ostensibly peaceful 
bands of Agency Indians, to join the hostiles in their march 
to intercept the white warriors. 

It is a fact not to be gainsaid that open hostilities on the 
part of the Sioux were provoked by the violation, on the part 
of the Government, of the treaty of 1868, by the stipulations 
of which the territory of the Black Hills and adjacent re- 
gion were declared an inviolable part of the Indian reserva- 
tion, sacred to their use, and not to be trespassed upon by 
white men. Forts Reno and Kearney were abandoned, and 
the whole country given up to Sitting Bull, the leader of 
the scattered but powerful bands of hostiles who infested the 
western plains. 

Three years later (in 1871) it was adjudged expedient by 
the Government to break the provisions of the treaty of 1868. 
The officials of the Northern Pacific Railroad, then in pro- 
cess of construction across the continent, in the spring of 
1871, applied to the Government authorities at Washington 
for military protection and escort for a surveying party to 
be sent out during the summer of that year to explore and 
mark out the unsurveyed portion of the projected road — a 
line extending westward from the Missouri River in Dakota 
to the interior of Montana, west of the Yellowstone River. 
Authority was duly granted : the rights of the Indians being 
deemed of minor importance in the grand scheme of opening 
up the vast and fertile fields of the new north-west to rail- 
road enterprise, with its attendant train of settlers. 

The expedition, conducted by engineers of the Northern 
Pacific Railroad, and escorted by United States troops, left 


Fort Rice in June, 1871, and completed its mission in safety 
— no Indians molesting them, or interfering in any way with 
their progress. 

Again, on July 25th, 1872, a similar expedition left Fort 
Rice, and returned in October, 1872, having successfully ac- 
complished the exploration and survey of a route through 
Yellowstone Valley, reaching to the river of that name, and 
to the mouth of Powder River. 

This party encountered many hostile Indians, and their 
return march is described as a series of skirmishes. 

When near Fort Rice, on their return, Lieutenant Adair, 
of the 22d Infantry, and Lieutenant Crosby, of the 17th In- 
fantry, were killed — the latter being shot, scalped, and other- 
wise mutilated — by an Indian called " the Gaul," a notorious 
criminal and consumer of Cheyenne Agency rations. This 
murderer has since surrendered himself to the military au- 
thorities, and is now a pensioner, as before, upon the boun- 
ty of the Government. 

In July, 1873, a third expedition left Fort Rice on a simi- 
lar mission — the engineers and surveyors of the N. P. R. R., 
under the direction of General Rosser, the troops, compris- 
ing the escort, under command of General Stanley, and ac- 
companied by Lieutenant-Colonel Custer with the 7 th Cav- 
alry Regiment. The force consisted of about 1,700 men — 
cavalry, infantry, a battery of artillery, and a detachment of 
Indian scouts. 

This party encountered hostile Indians near the Yellow- 
stone, and on August 4th, several companies of the 7th Cav- 
alry, under Custer, had a sharp engagement with a body of 
Sioux, under Sitting Bull, resulting in the loss of one sol- 
dier, surprised at a spring, the wounding of Lieutenant Bra- 
den, and the murder of Dr. Houtzinger, veterinary surgeon, 
and Mr. Baliran, sutler of the 7th Cavalry — they being un- 
armed, detached from the main body, and unsuspicious of 

The expedition returned to Fort Rice during the latter 
part of September — the engineers having fully completed 
their explorations, and mapped out in detail the future course 
of the road. 


As may well be imagined, these frequent invasions of their 
territory by armed troops, awakened the most bitter resent- 
ment in the breasts of the hostile Indians, and when, in 1874, 
in obedience to the demands of the press, that the territory 
of the Black Hills should be explored and opened to settle- 
ment, it was decided by the Government to send an explor- 
ing expedition of armed troops into that hitherto unknown 
stronghold of the savages, the seal was set upon the crown- 
ing act of its long series of annually-broken faith. 

It had long been matter of popular belief in the north- 
west that gold existed in the Black Hills, and when, at last, 
the truth of these hitherto vague reports was established to 
a Certainty in many adventurous minds, the excitement be- 
came contagious, and parties of miners began to organize 
for the invasion of the Hills. Then it was determined by 
the Government to send a strong column of troops to thor- 
oughly explore the Black Hills, and ascertain, through offi- 
cial research, the truth or falsity of these golden rumors. 

Accordingly, July 1st, 1874, a force under Lieutenant-Col- 
onel Custer, comprising cavalry, infantry, four Gatling guns, 
and sixty Indian scouts — 1,200 strong — and accompanied by 
a huge wagon- train of provisions and baggage, left Fort Lin- 
coln and took up the line of march for the Black Hills. The 
party proceeded without molestation by Indians, although 
many hostiles were seen along the route. The discoveries 
of this expedition were such as to satisfy the most skeptical 
in regard to the mineral and agricultural wealth of the Black 
Hills region. Miners and other resolute pioneers began to 
pour into the country. 

The scientists, however, were not yet satisfied, and to quiet 
the learned disputes of the self-constituted geologists of the 
period, a second expedition, under direction of Professor 
Jenney, with military escort commanded by Colonel Dodge, 
9th Infantry, was sent from Fort Laramie the following year 

Their report, corroborative of the report of the expedi- 
tion of the preceding year, was not required to convince the 
hardy western pioneers of the desirability of the Hills a>& a 
place of residence. They required no encouragement in the 


shape of Government explorations, to brave the dangers of 
the trip, and to press in and occupy the land. 

Then it was that the Government awoke to a realization 
of the consequences likely to flow from its frequent violation 
of treaty obligations. A general war between the settlers 
and the Indians seemed imminent, if, indeed, an indiscrim- 
inate massacre of the former did not ensue. Every trail 
leading to the Black Hills was marked with bloodshed, and 
safety was found only in the interior of the Hills, where the 
superstition of the Indians did not allow them to penetrate. 
Then, too late, began the efforts of the Government to repair 
the wrong. An order was issued, warning the settlers to 
leave the Hills. Several times during the summer of 1875, 
the troops under General Crook were sent into the Hills to 
maintain the faith of the Government by removing the set- 
tlers from the territory. They were conveyed out of the 
country by military escort, imprisoned in military posts as 
breakers of the law, their property destroyed, and them- 
selves finally turned over to civil authority, to be punished 
for disobedience of the orders of the Federal Government. 
But all to no avail. Popular sympathy in the west was with 
them. Soon as released they invariably returned to the dis- 
puted territory, only to be again removed, and to again re- 
turn. In August, 1875, there were six hundred men in one 
locality, called " Custer City," and many others in different 
localities. When removed by military authority, these 
speedily returned, and the efforts of the Government to re- 
pair its broken faith, by removing and keeping out white set- 
tlers, were as futile as the military invasions of the country, 
under its sanction and direction, had been successful. 

So much for the causes that led to the breaking out of the 
war on the part of the Sioux. 

We are now to consider the relations of the chief actor in 
the tragedy in which it closed — George A. Custer, Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel of the 7th Cavalry — with a leader of the hostiles, 
who fired the shot that terminated his life, in the battle of 
the Little Big Horn, and thus gratified the vengeance for 
which he and his followers had long waited in the mountain 
fastnesses of Sitting Bull's domain. Some of the incidents 


we are about to relate may seem trivial and unimportant, 
but they were all links in the chain of destiny that was draw- 
ing the "long-haired chieftain" irresistibly toward his 
tragic fate. 

One bright morning in the spring of 1875 the peaceful cit- 
izens of a quiet little town on the Missouri Eiver, in Da- 
kota Territory, were immeasurably astonished to witness 
a company of the 7th Cavalry, ucder command of Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel G. A. Custer, come riding up their streets, 
fully armed and equipped as if for instant action. Nor was 
their surprise lessened when it became known that the ob- 
ject of the warlike display was nothing more nor less than 
* the capture of sundry bags of grain that had been stolen 
from the Government warehouses at Fort Lincoln by the 
soldiers and citizen thieves, and sold to sundry citizens of 
the town. After the capture of the bags of grain was suc- 
cessfully effected, and loaded on army wagons, and, taking 
with them several persons who had been concerned in the 
illegal transfer of Government property, the train returned 
in good order to Fort Lincoln. 


The Grain Thieves and Bain-in-the-Face. — The Unrelenting 


To make the record more complete in regard to army 
matters, and more especially in relation to the troubles and 
torments too often inflicted upon officers of high rank in the 
regular army, the writer will here introduce circumstances 
with relation to certain current events as they transpired, in 
order to more clearly and pointedly illustrate to the reader 
how General Custer, while in command at different stations, 
as well as other officers of high rank in the regular army at 
the present day, whose moral training having been good, and 
always with an eye to good discipline and the morale of their 
respective commands, also army society and communities 


in civil life are compelled not only to accept the presence, 
but to a certain extent, the services of unprincipled and 
profligate scapegoats, who, by accident, hold their positions 
either by commission or special appointment, not only to 
the horrid disgust, but to the actual disgrace and discredit 
of our worthy professional army officers and their families, as 
well as to all civilized and well-regulated communities who 
are at times compelled to accept the services of, whenever 
enforced upon them, a certain immoral and wretched class 
of imported floating spawn, that hold positions by accident. 

General Custer, in his well-meant efforts to preserve the 
morale of the rank and file of his command, and to enforce 
good order and discipline throughout the garrison at which 
he was stationed, did not escape the annoyances, or avoid 
the obstacles usually encountered by United States army 
officers of high rank in similar measures of reform. 

Not the least difficulty in the way of success in such efforts, 
is found in the character, or rather the lack of character, of 
many of their subordinate officers ; and this is due to the 
appointments from civil life, made after the close of the war, 
by congressmen of a certain class, who, for a time, regarded 
the army as an asylum for their poor relatives and distressed 
constituents, many of whom were wholly unfit for their posi- 
tions, both on account of utter incompetency and intemperate 
habits. This class of appointments having been forced upon 
the army by unprincipled politicians, tended greatly to re- 
duce the morale of the army and to lower the standard of 
social life in army circles, and rendered also much more 
difficult the task of commanding officers in enforcing disci- 
pline and orderly behavior in their respective commands. 

General Custer was not exempt from these annoyances, 
but frequently found his plans for enforcing army regulations 
seriously interfered with by the inconsiderate and unauthor- 
ized action of his subordinates. 

On one occasion, General Custer had occasion to detail a 
Lieutenant from his command on special secret service for 
the Government. 

A gang of grain and horse thieves infested the garrison, 
whom it was important to shadow at their base of operations 
in a neighboring village. 

the; hostiles. 35 

The officer assumed the rde of detective, took up his sta- 
tion in the village, under positive orders from General Custer 
" to let no guilty man escape," which order, unlike that of 
President Grant's in the whisky ring cases, was given in all 
sincerity, and with the expectation that it would be carried 
out to the letter. 

But instead of conducting himself as an officer and gen- 
tleman, and thereby justifying the confidence reposed in 
him by his superior officer, his special attentions were re- 
served for a damsel of African extraction and chocolate com- 
plexion, who had long been a sort of silent partner in his 
household joys and sorrows, and who had added to his re- 
sponsibilities and contributed an infinitesimal unit to the roll 
of the census-taker oi the village aforesaid at the same time. 

His regular associates were the miscreants and low flung 
gamblers of the town, and his most frequent haunts the dens 
and dives where their evil games flourished unmolested. 

Of the gang of thieves who were detected with stolen 
grain in their possession, but very few were brought to trial, 
and fewer still were punished. One or two of minor influ- 
ence were selected as victims, and their conviction was 
procured in the courts. The other and more prominent 
leaders of the gang were permitted to go unpunished, and 
the officer afterwards openly and boldly boasted of the favor- 
itism shown certain guilty but influential parties, who, 
through his connivance, were permitted to escape the pun- 
ishment that was their due. 

This profligate officer, who thus proved faithless to the 
trust imposed on him, to gratify his own personal designs 
and illegitimate purposes, when leaving the country left be- 
hind him another sprig of his paternity, in the shape of a 
curbstone-shyster, whether to take charge of the bastard 
responsibility aforesaid, or to render aid and encouragement 
to the gang of outcasts, thugs and petty imported govern- 
ment thieves who still hold sway on the frontier (and who 
are his constant associates) does not appear. 

The reader, doubtless, already knows too well that our 
social circles, both in the army and civil life, are drifted over 
with this class of profligates, and the writer has simply call- 


ed up this matter to show how military circles have been 
imposed upon by the appointment of such unprincipled 
men, who, in all probability, could not make a respectable 
living outside the army, but who have obtained commis- 
sions through. transitory political influence, and are thrown 
in to fill vacancies caused by the death or resignation of 
worthier men. 

It is, however, proper to state that this evil has of late 
been counteracted greatly by the action of the better class 
of officers, many of whom have gone to work earnestly to 
weed out from the service, wherever practicable, these un- 
principled vagabonds, who disgrace the uniform they wear, 
and who have sought a commission in the army, only to find 
there an asylum for life. 

The entire blame, as already said, for this unwarranted 
state of affairs in the United States army, lies at the doors 
of unscrupulous members of Congress, who recommend for 
appointments in the army the worthless and degraded loaf- 
ers of their respective districts, as a reward for political 

If the better class of officers continue to apply the remedy 
at their hands, and administer the medicine freely, the result 
will add greatly to their personal credit, and be highly con- 
ducive to a more wholesome discipline, and increased respect- 
ability, and better morale of the army. The only suggestion 
the writer has to make is, " Let the good work go on — keep 
tveeding out" 

In returning to the grain thieves we will briefly state : 
Of the citizens arrested in this way and confined in the post 
guard-house at Fort Lincoln, were two men who, not pleased 
with the military attentions paid them, resolved no longer 
to trespass on the willing hospitality of the 7th Cavalry, and 
one night, with the connivance of the soldiers implicated 
with them, a hole was cut in the outside wall of the guard- 
house ; thus they obtained their liberty, and afterward, out- 
side the limits of the reservation, defied arrest. 

The escape of these parties was of small moment in itself 
— but, at the same time and through the same aperture, 
there escaped an inmate of the guard-house — an Indian held 


prisoner by Custer — who, afterward, in the valley of the 
Little Big Horn* killed his distinguished jailer, and who, 
now going directly from the Lincoln guard-house to the 
hostile camp, devoted his time thereafter to persuading 
peaceful bands of Agency Indians to join them, and to per- 
fecting htg plans of future vengeance. This was Bain-in-the- 
Face, the most treacherous and bloody-minded of the Unc- 
papa hostiles, yet who so far had disguised his hatred to the 
white men, as to be duly enrolled upon the books of the 
Agent (at Standing Bock) as a good Indian, and as such was 
entitled to a share in the regular issues of provisions, blankets 
and ammunition. But, like the majority of these peaceful 
warriors, Bain-in-the-Face was a good Indian only during the 
winter season, and pending the spring issuance of rations 
and clothing. Thereafter he was wont to depart on the war- 
path with parties of the able-bodied warriors of the tribe, 
leaving their women and children under the protecting care 
of the Agency until the waning of the summer, when cold 
weather and the approach of another ration period would 
draw them back to the Agency. Here, at the rejoicings con- 
sequent upon the issuance of rations, it was their wont to 
boast of their bloody deeds, and exhibit the scalps and tro- 
phies torn from the helpless victims they had slaughtered 
with the repeating rifles obligingly furnished them by the 
United States Government. 

This is literal truth. Bain-in-the-Face, an Indian of the 
Uncpapa tribe, and an attache of Standing Bock Agency — 
hence, presumably at peace with the white men — had assist- 
ed at the killing of Dr. Houtzinger and Mr. Baliran, the 
civilians murdered on the march with the expedition of 1873, 
already referred to in these pages. 

In the winter of 1875 the Standing Bock Agency Indians 
were holding their usual dance on an occasion of drawing 
their stated rations. Among them, as usual, was Bain-in- 
the-Face, with his fellow-murderers, all pensioners upon the 
bounty of a weakly, magnanimous Government. 

In the course of their pantomimic dance there was told, in 
the plainest of Indian sign language, the bloody tale of the 
murder of two unarmed white men in the valley of the Yel- 


lowstone. Exultingly in the gyrations of his war-dance the 
Indian boasted of his prowess, and, in proof thereof, exhib- 
ited articles that he had taken from the lifeless body of Dr. 
Houtzinger. In the little crowd of white spectators near at 
hand — agency employes, hangers-on of the military post, 
etc. — stood Charles Reynolds, a scout attached to the 7th 
Cavalry, well and favorably known on the frontier as " Lone- 
some Charley," a brave-hearted, dauntless, quiet man, and 
who afterward was killed in Reno's rout at the Little Big 
Horn battle. Returning to his post at Fort Lincoln, Rey- 
nolds reported to Custer what he had seen and heard. A 
detachment of one hundred men and four officers were at 
once dispatched from Lincoln to Standing Rock Agency, 
seventy miles distant, to arrest the murderer. Arrived at 
the Agency, they found the Indians engaged in their usual 
occupation of drawing rations — it being the day for the is- 
suance of beef. Hundreds of fully-armed warriors, mingled 
with the non-combatants of the tribe, were greedily await- 
ing their share of the bountiful supply of food which a mis- 
taken Government deems essential to prolong the precious 
lives of its privileged assassins and incendiaries, yet whom, 
as we have already seen, it does not itself disdain to rob of 
their unceded lands, when measures of public policy dictate 
the violation of its treaty stipulations. 

Notwithstanding great excitement on the part of the as- 
sembled braves, the arrest was effected in safety, and Rain- 
in-the-Face was conveyed, under escort of Captain T. W. 
Custer — brother of Lieutenant-Colonel Custer — to Fort 
Lincoln. Here he fully confessed his crime, and remained 
a prisoner in the guard-house at Lincoln until the incarcer- 
ation of the suspected grain thieves and their escape gave 
him his liberty. 

Rain-in-the-Face went directly to the hostile camp, and 
attaching himself to the band of Sitting Bull, was joined by 
his followers, and sent frequent messages by the Agency In- 
dians — who paid them frequent visits of friendship and busi- 
ness — that he was ardently awaiting an opportunity to be 
revenged on Lieutenant-Colonel Custer and Captain Custer, 
for his imprisonment. 


In the spring of 1876 it was determined by the Govern- 
ment to attempt the subjugation of Sitting Bull and the law- 
less tribes under him, who had refused to accede to the pro- 
visions of the treaty of 1868, and had since led a wandering 
life. Their numbers augmented each spring by frequent 
accessions* of warriors, and supplies of war irom the Mis- 
souri River Agencies. From their stronghold at the head- 
waters of the Yellowstone, war parties were continually sent 
out to annoy the white settlements. 

Their camp formed a convenient retreat for disaffected 
Agency Indians. Criminals and unruly spirits, supported 
by the Government through the winter, were ready in the 
summer to join the hostiles, conveying to them arms, ammu- 
nition, ponies and supplies. Thus the problem of dealing 
with the professedly peaceful Indians was greatly compli- 

The only way to end the constantly-recurring troubles, 
and prevent a general uprising of the whole body of Indians 
— many of them already on the war-path, resentful at the 
violation of the treaty of 1868 — was to strike a decisive blow 
directly at the headquarters of the savage tribes, and by 
breaking up their rendezvous in the Yellowstone region, 
compel them to return and surrender at the various Agen- 
cies on the Missouri River. 

With this object in view, the expedition of 1876 was plan- 
ned. It was arranged that three expeditions should start 
simultaneously for the headwaters of the Yellowstone — one 
from the north, one from the south, and one from the east — 
the three to join forces and co-operate in the region consti- 
tuting the objective point of their converging marches. 

The column from the south, under General Crook, started 
from Fort Fetterman, Wyoming Territory, May 29th, 1876, 
and marched due north for the Powder River country. It 
was composed of 1,300 men, and arrived at old Fort Reno 
June 3d. It succeeded in reaching the indicated ground, 
viz., the valley of the Yellowstone, drained by its tributa- 
ries, the Big Horn, Rosebud, Tongue and Powder Rivers, 
together with their branches, and at one time was within 
one hundred miles of the northern column ; but the Indians 


were between them, and after several heavy skirmishes, in 
which the troops were defeated, it fell back to the head of 
Tongue Biver, and from there returned ingloriously to its 
starting place. 

The force from the north, under Colonel Gibbon, left Fort 
Ellis, Montana, with a strength of four hundred men, and 
wagon train, marched due east, and joined the force from the 
east under General Terry, June 1st. 

The departure of the column from the east, which, in the 
original plan of the campaign, was to have been led by Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Custer, had been delayed, in consequence of 
Custer having been called to Washington to give evidence 
before the Congressional Committee then engaged in invest- 
igating charges against Secretary of War Belknap. Like all 
army officers stationed on the frontier, Custer was convers- 
ant with the terrible corruption of the Interior Department, 
displayed in the management of the Indian Agencies and 
trading posts. As an honest man, he did what many others, 
better informed than himself, but more devoted to self- 
interest, had not dared to do — spoke aloud his convictions. 
Custer's testimony — and the fact that he had presumed to 
hold opinions on the subject — was distasteful to Belknap's 
friend, U. S. Grant, President of the United States, and 
brother of Orville Grant, a post-trader of precious memory 
on the Missouri Biver. 


Origin of the Breach between Belknap and Custer. 

Inasmuch as there are but very few people in the country, 
even among those holding official positions in the army, and 
in military circles outside, comprehend f lly the causes that 
led the Belknap tradership business to such a sudden 
" burst of the bubble," the author thinks it proper, in con- 
nection with the foregoing history, to state here fully the 
facts as they came under his observation at the time of their 
occurrence. Several m&nths before the high court of im- 
peachment was ordered to investigate the tradership business 


of Secretary of War Belknap, there was, in one of the regi- 
ments belonging to the United States Army, a young officer 
who was placed under arrest in consequence of charges pre- 
ferred against him. He was tried by court-martial, and by 
a preponderance of evidence against him, and an unfortunate 
combination of circumstances, was found guilty and sen- 
tenced to dismissal from the service of the United States. 
It was, however, generally considered among those conversant 
with the affair, that the charges originally preferred against 
him were frivolous, and were created and brought against 
him more from personal malice than from any zeal for the 
service on the part of his accusers. Through the regular 
military channels, the findings and sentence of the court- 
martial reached Secretary Belknap for his approval or dis- 
approval. It was thought in army circles that the Secretary 
should have shown some leniency, and been governed by the 
precedents on record at the War Office in similar cases, at 
the time. A commutation of the sentence to suspension 
from rank and half pay for six or twelve months was con- 
fidently expected by the friends of the aforesaid delinquent 
officer, and would have been considered a reasonable pun- 
ishment for the offense charged. Contrary to popular ex- 
pectation, the sentence of the court was promptly confirmed 
by the Secretary of War, and the young officer left the ser- 
vice of the United States army in disgrace, but only to 
return in due time. He, however, immediately set himself 
to work to procure his reinstatement by a special act of Con- 
gress ; but the approval of the findings and sentence of the 
court-martial by Secretary Belknap, of course, made a very 
strong case against him. In the meantime, the young officer, 
who, while in the service, had excellent opportunities to 
observe the manner in which the tradership traffic was car- 
ried on under the Belknap rule, set himself to work collecting 
facts and evidence concerning the same, and by means of 
these, prevailed upon his friends in Congress to bring the 
matter before the proper committee. This was done, and 
the result was a high court of impeachment. The Secretary 
of War was arraigned at the bar of the U. S. Senate to 
answer the grave charges preferred against him, and only 


escaped the righteous verdict of an indignant nation by a 
hasty resignation, and as hasty an acceptance of the same by 
President Grant, of his high office. We may add in this 
connection, that the young officer who first set in motion 
the much needed investigation, was afterward reinstated to 
his place in the army, and assumed his former rank in the 

Another matter upon which the people of the country, 
even those of high standing, both in civil and military life, 
are not enlightened, is the causes' that led to the ill-feeling 
existing between Grant and Belknap on the one side against 
General G. A. Custer on the other. It was previously a 
matter of record, and known all over the country, that 
Grant, Sherman and Sheridan were not only intimate friends 
and admirers of General Custer, but that they placed un- 
limited confidence in his fighting abilities and military skill. 

Indeed, Custer was acknowledged to be the best Tndi^Ti 
fighter on the plains, by both Generals Sherman and Sheri- 
dan ; and on the 13th of August, 1869, at Fort Hays, Kan- 
sas, Brevet-Major-General S. D. Sturgis, Colonel 7th U. S. 
Cavalry, says, in an official communication to headquarters : 
" There is, perhaps, no other officer of equal rank on this 
line, who has worked more faithfully against the Indians, or 
who has acquired the same degree of knowledge of the coun- 
try and of the Indian character." 

Department commanders also paid high tribute to him as 
an Indian fighter and an officer of indomitable energy and 
skill in general military matters ; while General Sheridan 
remarked at one time in the field, while Custer was, with a 
portion of his regiment, engaged with a band of wild war- 
riors of the plains : " When I want anything done up quick, 
I can send Custer to do it, and can almost invariably rely 
upon the result." Such a remark from the Lieut. -General 
of the Army shows that the utmost confidence was placed 
in Custer, aside from the fact that he was frequently placed 
in command of the most important expeditions against the 
hostile Indians. 

Now, in the name of a just Heaven, the author begs leave 
to ask of the highest military tribunal in the land, what had 


General George A. Custer done during the interval between 
the above date and the time of his fitting out his last expe- 
dition for that fatal march to the valley of the Little Big 
Horn, to warrant the harsh and humiliating treatment then 
bestowed upon him by President Grant and Secretary of 
War Belknap? The voice of the country speaks to-day, 
and says that Custer, the true soldier and gentleman, had 
forfeited not one iota of his well-earned fame or knightly 
standing; while Secretary Belknap, whose high position had 
already been degraded by the illegal sale of traderships, was 
still further prostituting his honorable office to gratify a 
personal ill-feeling against a gallant officer, who was the 
beau ideal of a soldier, the pride of the American cavalry. 
The author proposes to here explain briefly the occurrences 
that transpired to mar the friendly relations heretofore ex- 
isting between Grant and Belknap on one side, and Custer 
on the other. During the year 1870, in the latter part of 
June, and at the closing of Congress, a certain law concern- 
ing post traders was very ingeniously framed, and embodied 
in what was known as the Military Bill, then pending before 
Congress, the substance of which is about as follows : " And 
the Secretary of War shall have power to appoint one or 
more traders at the military posts on the frontier, for the 
accommodation of freighters and emigrants." The reader 
will readily observe the ingenuity displayed in framing the 
above clause, and when the bill was printed and placed before 
the unsuspecting and unsophisticated members of Congress, 
most of whom had never been west of the one hundredth 
longitudinal line, its deep design escaped detection. The 
Congressmen felt, doubtless, that they were allying them- 
selves to a liberal act, and making special provision for the 
wants of the freighters and emigrants, who are, after the 
army, the real pioneers of the far West. Little did these 
unsophisticated Congressmen think that in passing this 
seemingly beneficial act, they were making the Secretary of 
War the supreme judge and ruler over every post trader in 
the western country, and that he would with one stroke of 
the pen, in one sweeping order, turn them all adrift, regard- 
less of their fitness or unfitness for the position, or the fact 


that they held their positions by the recommendation and 
with the consent of the Post Council and Post Commandant 
of the military stations where they were located. Under 
former regulations, as now, post traders were appointed by 
a council of the officers of the post, with the approval of the 
Post Commandant ; Belknap made all subsequent appoint- 
ments to suit himself, regardless of the wishes of 'the officers 
on duty at the post where the trader was to be located. 

This unprecedented way of making appointments by one 
of the highest officials of the nation, was not confined in its 
discourtesy to the officers of the military posts in the West, 
but extended to Generals Sherman and Sheridan, and the 
department commanders as 'welL When an appointment 
was given to a post trader under the new regime, it was not, 
as before, forwarded through the regular military channels, 
but was sent at once direct to the commanding officer of the 
post where the trader was to locate, ignoring thereby the 
General and Lieutenant-General of the army, as well as the 
department commanders. Such open, bold, and high- 
handed discourtesy shown toward the general officer^ of the 
army, whose careerwas recorded as good in the minds of 
the American people, and who were known to be eminently 
conscientious and successful in the management of army 
matters under their control, and whose honor and fidel- 
ity to duty could not be questioned, of course had a demor- 
alizing effect, and naturally caused a feeling of great dis- 
trust throughout the army toward this high official of the 
nation — Secretary Belknap. Even the rank and file of the 
army shared the feeling of discontent. 

The private soldiers, when in their own club-room, known 
as " the soldiers' club-room," would at times say : " Well, 
boys, let's drink to ' old Bel ;' he is not only Secretary of 
War, and the Supreme Boss over all of us, but the old coon 
is running the sutler stores too !" 

At one of the posts, where Custer was placed in command, 
on the frontier, the post trader was one of the Belknap ap- 
pointees, and after some months had passed, Custer, who was 
a very close-observing officer, and knew no other way than 
to do his duty faithfully, reported to the Secretary of War 


that the trader in question was a man of intemperate and 
profligate habits, which fact had a demoralizing tendency 
among the young officers and private soldiers of the gar- 

The Secretary could not overlook nor pigeon-hole a com- 
munication of this nature and importance. The one thing 
he could not avoid doing to preserve outwardly the dignity 
and honor of his office, and that was to remove the trader. 
Custer had himself a record and influence that the War Of- 
fice could not ignore, and with Custer's letter of information 
on record, the efforts of the venerable Simon Cameron, and 
the most influential men in Congress, were powerless to 
save the profligate trader whom he had denounced. He was 
removed and another trader was appointed to the post. 

Custer had no preference in the matter of the post trader- 
ships, knowing he was likely to be ordered from one mili- 
tary post to another at any time ; but for the sake of the 
younger officers of the regiment, one of them his own 
brother, he desired that the example and opportunities of 
intemperance should not be furnished them in the store of 
the post trader. 

Again months rolled on. Custer was engaged in making 
a private investigation in regard to some grain stolen from 
the Government warehouses. Before the end of his investi- 
gations was reached, a portion of the stolen grain was dis- 
covered in the warehouse of the post trader. Suffice this 
matter to rest here, by saying that Custer ordered the unfor- 
tunate trader off the reservation, on pain of arrest, which 
order was, of course, obeyed ; the trader leaving his partner 
to settle the business, and he never returned to that reser- 
vation while Custer was in command. Here it was that 
Custer showed a degree of leniency and warm-heartedness 
of which few people are aware ; and yet these were his char- 
acteristic qualities. He could have pursued the trader with 
criminal proceedings, had he so chosen. But he preferred 
to leave that duty to others, knowing that he had done his 
in ordering the trader off the military reservation, and 
feeling that humane considerations were not beneath the 
thoughts of any man, however great or powerful. 


The reader will now readily perceive that in both cases 
against the traders, Custer had simply done his duty as an 
officer and a soldier, as his obligations to the service de- 
manded that he should do. No other course, in honor, was 
open to him ; his duty unquestionably requiring him to per- 
form it fearlessly, no matter what trouble or disappointment 
it might entail upon Secretary Belknap, who, in an unpre- 
cedented manner, had taken the tradership appointments in 
his own hands, and who was not the man to brook with equa- 
nimity the enforced displacement of two of his favorite post 
traders. Ten companies of troops usually wintered at this 
post, and the profits arising from the tradership business 
were not less than $15,000 or $20,000 per year. Hence arose 
the breach between the avaricious Belknap and the gallant* 
close-observing Custer, and it soon grew into a wide one. 
Custer was called to Washington by a Congressional Com- 
mittee to testify in regard to the post tradership business. 
He exhausted all honorable means to avoid the summons of 
the Committee, but was compelled to obey their mandate. 
Custer's testimony, or rather the fact that he was called 
upon by the Committee, as probably conversant with the 
sales of post traderships, excited the ire of Belknap, and 
here it was that President Grant arrayed himself by the side' 
of Belknap against Custer. Belknap was a warm personal 
friend of the President's, and of his brother, Orville Grant, 
who will long live in the history of the Missouri River coun- 
try as a successful speculator in the sale of frontier post 
traderships. Belknap was, moreover, a member of his cab- 
inet, and Grant must needs sustain him — even had the fam- 
ily reputation not been involved through the speculative 

The Belknap impeachment trial, although the criminal 
escaped deserved punishment by a precipitate resignation 
of his office, has no doubt had a great moral effect upon the 
different departments of the Government. Belknap now 
stands before the American people — not one of the leading 
officials of the country — not the honorable and dignified. 
Secretary of War he once appeared to be — but in the eyes 
of those who watched his career, he stands a disgraced man„ 


with " none so poor to do him reverence." He has lost not 
simply office and position, but character, reputation and the 
respect of the American people, who would have been glad 
to have held him in their highest esteem until this day, had 
he deported himself with honor. 

Let his example serve to deter the future high officials 
of the land from deviating from the path of strict rectitude. 
The homely old motto, " Honesty is the best policy," is as 
well worthy the consideration of a politician and office-holder 
as of that of the average citizen. 


Custer Displaced from live Command of the Eastern Column, at 

Fort Lincoln. 

Custer was displaced from the command of the eastern 
column, then in process of organization, at Fort Lincoln, 
and forbidden, by order of the President, to accompany the 
troops on the march. General Terry was placed in com- 
mand of the expedition, but afterward, in response to the 
earnest entreaties of Custer to be spared the humiliation of 
seeing the troops march without him, the President's order 
was so far modified as to permit him to go with the expedi- 
tion, in command of the 7th Cavalry. Thus reorganized, 
the column left Fort Lincoln with 12 companies of the 
7th Cavalry, under Lieutenant-Colonel Custer, 3 com- 
panies of the 6th and 17th Infantry, 4 Gatling guns, and 
a detachment of 45 Indian scouts, under the Arickiree 
chief, Bloody Knife. The wagon train consisted of 114 
six-mule teams, 37 two-horse teams, 70 other vehicles, 
ambulances, etc., with 85 pack-mule and 179 civilian drivers 
— a total force of 2,700 armed men — seeking the Sioux, and 
divided into three columns of 1,300, 400, and 1,000 respect- 
ively. These three columns started from the circumference 
of a circle with a radius of three hundred miles, under 
orders to concentrate and join their converging lines some- 
where in the region enclosed by the Big Horn and Powder 
Rivers — where the enemy was supposed to be in force — there 


to enclose and crush out the desperate remnants of savage 
outlaws, their number being variously estimated at from 
1,000 to 3,000. Later events proved the fallacy of this be- 
lief ; that between 3,000 and 5,000 Indians were massed 
in the fatal valley of the Yellowstone, awaiting in savage 
ferocity the coming of the troops, all of whom they could 
easily have annihilated with their superior arms and steeds, 
had the remainder of them come within their lines. 

Who that lived in Bismarck in the year 1876, during the 
time that the " Lincoln column " of the great expedition was 
being fitted out across the river, will forget that it was 
matter of public notoriety that the savage hordes were 
gathering their clans from north and from south, to dispute 
the passage of the soldiers ; that even while their godly agents 
were crying aloud, "All is well/' the Bed Cloud, Standing 
Hock and Spotted Tail agencies were being depopulated of 
their fighting material. Supply trains, with men, arms, 
ponies, provisions, ammunition and warriors, were rushing 
to that wild rendezvous on the Yellowstone, where the rest- 
less Sitting Bull awaited the tardy coming of the royal sacri- 
fice. Each new accession to their ranks was hailed with 
acclamations of delight, and in the weird gyrations of the 
war-dance the blood-stained wretches recounted their gory 
deeds, and sought to stimulate each other to horrid acts of 
brutality and bloodshed. Who that heard them can forget 
those significant inquiries heard in the streets of Bismarck, 
by emissaries fresh from Sitting Bull's camp, during the 
sad days of Custer's humiliation under presidential dis- 
pleasure, when the men waited in arms for the order to 
march, and their brave, outspoken commander chafed in 
bitterness of spirit under the undeserved disgrace of being 
ordered to stay behind. "What are the dog-soldiers waiting 
for?" "Are they tired before they start?" "What is the 
matter with Custer?" "Is the long-haired chief sick?" 
All these and more, coupled with direful threats and sick- 
ening messages of expectant revenge, from Bain-in-the-Face 
and his no less bloody followers, were repeated from mouth 
to mouth, and excited in many hearts sad feelings of fore- 
boding relative to the fate of the gallant Custer, who in go- 


ing forth to give battle to the merciless chieftain of the Sioux, 
left behind him, in the person of XL S. Grant, the chief ex- 
ecutive of the land, a, foe no less relentless. 

On June 21st Gibbon's column was sent from Terry's 
camp on the Yellowstone, at the mouth of Tongue River, to 
the mouth of the Big Horn River, where, after being ferried 
across by the supply steamer " Far West," that had followed 
by river from Fort Lincoln, it was directed to proceed to 
the forks of the Little and Big Horn, its future movements 
to be controlled by circumstances as they should arise, but 
with the hope expressed by General Terry that the Indians 
in the Little Big Horn region should be enclosed by Gib- 
bon's column, in co-operation with the 7th Cavalry, under 
Ouster, who left Terry's camp on the Yellowstone and 
Tongue Rivers on the afternoon of June 22d, in pursuit of a 
large body of Indians, whose trail, proceeding up the Rose- 
bud River, had been discovered a few days previously in a 
scouting expedition by Major Reno, of the 7th Cavalry. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Ouster was not hampered by positive 
orders, being simply advised to follow the Indian trail until 
its general direction was definitely ascertained. Then, if, 
as was expected, it should be found to turn toward the 
Little Big Horn, he was directed to proceed southward as 
far as the headwaters of the Tongue, and then to turn to- 
ward the Little Big Horn, guarding constantly against the 
possibility of the Indians escaping around his left flank to 
the south and rear, General Terry distinctly stating that 
" such was his confidence in the zeal, energy and ability of 
Lieutenant-Colonel Custer, that he would not impose upon 
him precise orders, which might hamper his action when 
nearly in contact with the enemy." 


March to the Battle-fidd. 

Tl\us, with his future course of action left to his own dis- 
cretionary judgment, Lieut. -Colonel Custer, with his regi- 
ment, left camp on the Yellowstone, June 22d, and proceeded 
up the Eosebud Eiver during the 23d and 24th, making 
sixty-one miles, the trail and Indian signs freshening with 
every mile, when they encamped and waited for information 
from the scouts, whose detachment had accompanied the 
regiment. It was ascertained, beyond doubt, that the Indian 
village was in the valley of the Little Big Horn, and, in 
order to reach it without discovering their approach to the 
Indians, a night march was decided on, the troops moving 
at 11 P. M., the line of march turning from the Eosebud to 
the right, up one of its branches. At 2 A M. of the morn- 
ing of the 25th, it was* ascertained that the divide between 
the Eosebud and the Little Big Horn Eivers could not be 
crossed before daylight. The command then rested for three 
hours and made coffee, many of the brave fellows then par- 
taking of their last meal on earth. The march was then 
resumed and the divide crossed, and about 8 A. M. the 
command was in the valley of one of the branches of the 
Little Big Horn. Indians being then plainly seen, and as it 
was thus evident that the troops could not take them by 
surprise, it was decided to attack them at once. 

On the march, Custer had divided the regiment into three 
separate commands, assigning to Major M. A Eeno, Compa- 
nies M, A and G, and to Captain Benteen, H, D and K, 
retaining himself the command of Companies C, E, F, I" 
and L ; Captain McDougal being assigned with Company B 
to the care of the pack train in the rear. 

Custer's plan of attack in Indian warfare, in which he had 
been hitherto pre-eminently successful, was that of simulta- 
neous assault from several points, an attack in front and 
flank at all events. In this instance, when arrived near the 
battle-field, and as he prepared himself to lead the charge. 


about 12.30 P: M., he ordered the remaining two divisions 
to move up quickly and support him. 

The battalion under Benteen with the pack train did not 
come up in time to participate in the charge and opening 

The detachment under Major Reno, numbering 145 men, 
hurried forward as ordered, and crpssed the river, where 
they soon became engaged with overwhelming numbers of 
the enemy. To save themselves from utter annihilation at 
the hands of the countless droves of Indians, who suddenly 
sprang into view, they retreated to a high hill in the vicin- 
ity, where they entrenched themselves, being soon after 
joined by the troops under Benteen. 

Soon afterward they were furiously attacked and besieged 
by numberless foes ; the siege being next day renewed, when 
the troops were relieved by the arrival of the- soldiers under 
General Terry, the Indians filing away across the hills at his 

Up to this date nothing was known of the fate of Custer 
and his command, the soldiers in the entrenchment on the 
hill, who never before had known him to fail them in dan- 
ger, wondering audibly why he did not come to their relief.. 
In the retreat from the scene of his engagement with the 
Indians to the safety of the hill, Major Eeno lost in killed : 
First Lieutenant Donald Mcintosh, Second Lieutenant Ben. 
H. Hodgeson, 7th Cavalry, and A. A. Surgeon J. M. DeWolf, 
together with the famous scout Charles Reynolds, and 29. 
enlisted men of the regiment killed and 7 wounded. In the 
later attack on the hill, of the combined forces of Reno and 
Benteen — 380 men in all, with 12 officers — there were killed 
18 enlisted men and 46 wounded. 

Upon the arrival of General Terry, the first intimatjjon 
was obtained of the fate of Custer and his men. An Upsar- 
oka scout, named Curley, had almost miraculously escaped 
during the progress of the fight with Custer, and made his 
way back to General Terry, then on the steamer " Fat West," 
at the mouth of the Big Horn River, and reported the total 
loss of Custer and his soldiers. 

This report was disbelieved, or, at least, thought to be 


greatly exaggerated — it being deemed impossible that such 
a calamity could befall the most successful Indian fighter of 
his day. Yet, from the extreme agitation of the forlorn scout, 
it was evident that a misfortune of some kind had occurred ; 
and General Terry, with the residue of the troops under 
him, at once pressed forward, under the leadership of Cur- 
ley, arriving in time to save the lives of the wearied sur- 
vivors under Reno ; who, though making a gallant defense 
against overpowering numbers of the enemy, had lost all 
hope of rescue, since Custer had apparently failed them, and 
greeted the unexpected arrival of their comrades as a happy 
reprieve from expected death. 

Immediately upon the arrival of General Terry — the In- 
dians then having left — a detachment was sent out to search 
for traces of the missing commander and his men. Not far 
away their battle-field was found, and though no living thing 
was there to tell how grandly they had fought, and nobly 
they had died, yet no tongue was needed to show that they 
had all gone down, company by company, contending to the 
last for life, as heroes ever do. Their dead and mutilated 
bodies, disposed in the orderly array of systematic battle ; 
the compact companies, with officers in place behind them ; 
the unbroken skirmish line of ghastly corpses, testified more 
eloquently than spoken words could do to the sublimity of 
courage that had animated each soul of that heroic band. 
An examination of the battle-ground disclosed the fact that 
when Custer left his comrades of the other two divisions, 
with orders for them to hasten forward and join in the at- 
tack, he dashed down the stream soma distance, seeking a 
convenient ford where he could cros^the river and attack 
the village from below ; but failing to do so, went much fur- 
ther down the river than intended in his arrangements 
with Reno, whom he expected to support in the charge he 
had ordered Eeno to make before leaving him. When, at 
length, a suitable ford was discovered, his further progress 
was violently opposed by numberless Indians, who poured 
in a heavy fire from across the narrow river. Custer dis- 
mounted, to fight on foot, but his skirmishers were unable 
to cross the stream under the galling fire that assailed them 


and the cavalry were speedily driven back to the high ground 
in the rear ; but not until swarms of Indians, mounted and 
on foot, had poured over the shallow river, and seized the 
ravines on either side, effectually cutting off their retreat in 
the direction in which they came. Custer was soon effectu- 
ally surrounded, and receiving a terrible fire from all sides. 
The dead bodies of men and horses were found at the ford, 
and at a distance of about three-quarters of a mile from the 
river, as though thrown across the line of retreat to check 
the advance of the enemy. The entire company of Captain 
James Calhoun, brother-in-law of Lieutenant-Colonel Cus- 
ter, lay dead in an irregular line, with Captain Calhoun and 
his Lieutenant, John J. Crittenden, in their proper places in 
the rear. A mile beyond this, on a ridge parallel to the river, 
the whole of Captain Myles W. Keogh's company were 
slaughtered in position — their right resting on the hill 
where Custer fell. Still further back on the ridge were 
found the dead bodies of thirty-two men of Captain George 
W. Yates' company, and here, too, had fallen the brave and 
ill-fated Custer, with his brother, Captain T. W. Custer, his 
Adjutant, Captain W. W. Cook, Lieutenant William Van W. 
Beily, and Captain Yates, together with the young nephew 
and brother of Custer — Armstrong Beed and Boston Custer, 
forage-master of the 7th Cavalry. 

In a ravine near the river were found the dead bodies of 
the men and horses of Captain Thomas W. Custer's company, 
together with those of Captain Algernon E. Smith, and 
twenty-three men of his company. Lieutenant James E. 
Porter^Jjieutenant John Sturgis, and Lieutenant Harring- 
ton, together with tlllrty-five enlisted men, were missing, and 
no trace of them could be discovered. Near the ford, as 
though killed early in the fight, was the body of Mark Kel- 
log, correspondent of the New York Herald, and a resident 
of the frontier. His body was undisturbed and still clothed, 
as though overlooked by accident in the horrible carnival of 
blood and butchery that followed hard upon the battle. 
Near here was also found the body of " Isaiah" a colored 
scout, long in the employ of the officers on the frontier, an 
intelligent, trustworthy man, married to a Sioux squaw, who, 


with his children, was then at Fort Rice. This circumstance 
did not appear to be a recommendation to the mercy of his 
wife's relatives, as he was not only killed, but circumstances 
indicated that he had been captured and met his death by 
the savage cruelty of torture. 

The probable fate of the thirty-five missing men and their 
three officers is too horrible to contemplate without a shud- 
der. It is claimed by Indians who were in the fight and after- 
wards returned to their agencies, that the horses of a portion 
of the calvary were captured by the Indians early in the en- 
gagement, while the situation of those surrounding the 
group of men and officers, with whom Custer made his last 
stand, would seem to indicate that they had been killed by 
the soldiers to form a barricade, behind which to defend 
themselves, until the relief which they doubtless then ex- 
pected from Reno and Benteen should arrive. 

How vague and satisfactory are these pitiful details of this 
most horrible of modern massacres, the exact occurrences of 
which will probably never ba known ! The sole survivors 
of all that proud array of men and steeds, so recklessly hur- 
ried to their impending doom, are the Upsaroka scout, 
"Curley," and the horse of Captain Keogh, Comanche, which 
was found near the battle-field with seven wounds. Major 
Reno, thinking him mortally wounded, ordered the noted 
war-horse to be shot; but Comanche was a veteran of the 
7th Cavalry, and the men who knew and loved him, begged 
for his life, and by careful treatment and nursing he was re- 
stored, and remains to-day the only living survivor of the 
fated five companies who plunged into the carnage that en- 
gulfed alike, rider and steed, in the lonely valley of the 
Little Big Horn. 

Soon after the discovery of the dead bodies on the battle- 
field, they were given hasty burial by their comrades of the 
surviving companies. Then, the Indians having escaped, 
and the supplies being exhausted, General Terry took up 
the line of march toward the Yellowstone, and returned with 
all possible haste to his headquarters at St. Paul, Minn., and 
thus ended one of the most disastrous and disgraceful cam- 
paigns in the annals of the country ; and in the language of 


General Sherman in his annual official report to the Secre- 
tary of War, who submitted the same to the next session of . : 
Congress (the Forty-fourth), which convened in December, j j/r 
1876, said, " And had it not been for the brave and heroic * 

Reno, not a man would have been brought off the field to 
tell the tale ! " 

In the entire management of the expedition, from its first 
organization down to the closing affray, there is but one re- 
deeming feature mingled with our pity for the gallant boys 
in blue, who there met an untimely death — the warmest 
Admiration for the knightly courage, to which their lifeless 
bodies, ranged in order along the battle lines, bore dumb but 
eloquent witness. 

" Even thus the sword of Custer, 
In his disastrous fall, 
Flashed out a blaze that charmed the world, 
And glorified his pall." 


We will here make brief mention of the filling up of the 
rank and file of the pet regiment on the plains, and some of 
its duties since the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Of the 
companies that were lost in that memorable battle, their 
places were at once filled by officers who survived to com- 
mand them, and were soon recruited to the maximum by 
recruits sent forward from the East, who were recruited 
with a special view to closing the Indian war in the north- 
west, if possible. The field officers of the regiment that sur- 
vived were veterans, and gallant and skillful men, who had 
seen many a hard-fought battle, and had won laurels on 
many a field, and lived only to take part in further opera- 
tions to open and pave the way for civilization. 

They had survived numerous battles during the war of 
the late rebellion, and had experienced hard service on our 
extreme frontier in subjugating the Indians, all the way from 
tho Wichita mountains to the valley of the Little Big Horn, 
where their gallant and chivalrous comrade, Lieutenant- 



Colonel Custer, fell at the head of their dashing and fearless 
troopers. This regiment has been on duty at different mili- 
tary stations — mostly in north-western Dakota — and gener- 
ally commanded by its Lieutenant-Colonel, Elmer Otis, and 
one or more of the Majors belonging to the regiment. 

Brevet-Colonel Elmer Otis, Lieutenant-Colonel of the 7th 
U. S. Cavalry, received his appointment from the military 
academy at West Point before the war, and has been deserv- 
edly promoted from time to time up to the assignment to 
duty with this regiment. He is an industrious, zealous, and 
faithful officer. He has been the commanding officer at Fort 
Lincoln a greater portion of the time since his assignment 
to duty with the 7th Cavalry. He is much admired as an 
officer and a gentleman by his command, and in army cir- 
cles as well as by the citizens in general. 

Brevet- Colonel Joseph E. Tilford, the senior Major of the 
7th Cavalry, was appointed from the military academy at 
West Point in 1851. He has been a brave and faithful offi- 
cer, and his conduct " was gallant and meritorious in the 
battle of Valverde, N. M." He has been commanding offi- 
cer at various military stations in north-western Dakota 
since his regiment came to Fort Rice in 1873. He is really 
the model and most gentlemanly Major in the U. S. Army. 
His record as a military officer and a gentleman is too well 
known to make mention at length in this volume. Suffice it 
to say, that he is an excellent military adviser, one of the 
best of disciplinarians, always having an eye to the morale 
of the army. 

Brevet-Brigadier-General Lewis Merrill, a Major in the 7th 
Cavalry, has been in the service since July, 1855. He re- 
ceived his appointment from the military academy at West 
Point, and served with distinction all through the late war. 
During the rebellion his services were specially gallant and 
meritorious against the rebels in north Missouri, and in the 
capture of Little Rock, Ark., also against the rebel forces in 
north-western Georgia. 

Major Merrill was well known through the late war as Col- 
onel of one of the finest regiments of cavalry in the service, 
" known as Merrill's Horse." Since the war he has filled 


important military positions in various parts of the country,, 
at times sitting as Judge Advocate on court martials. 

As a military law officer, lie has no superior in this de- 
partment, and we think we can safely say, no equal, unless it be 
General Alfred H. Terry, the Department Commander. For 
the past two seasons, he has had charge of protecting the 
line of the Northern Pacific Kailroad from Bismarck, D. T., 
to Miles City, M. T. The main duty of his command has 
been, and now is, to guard against roving bands of maraud- 
ing Indians who infest the plains more or less, roaming from 
one section of the country to another, more for the purpose 
of stealing and running off stock, than to engage in actual 
warfare. He is a thoroughly schooled and skilled officer, 
and highly esteemed by all who know him. 

Edward Ball, another Major of the " brave and intrepid 
7th," joined his regiment in April, 1880. His career with 
this regiment has been short, and but very little service in 
the field has been performed since his assignment as one of 
its Majors. He is a brave, skillful and gentlemanly officer, 
and well worthy the uniform he wears, having served in the 
regular army since 1844. His record for bravery, industry 
and zeal stands among the first in the country. 

Colonel Wm. Thompson, a retired officer from the 7th 
Cavalry, is a sturdy Pennsylvanian, and a true type of the 
American soldier and gentleman. At one time before the 
war, he was Professor of Law and Science in an Institute 
in his native State. Soon afterward he settled in Iowa and 
represented the Keokuk, or Southern district of that State 
in the Thirtieth and Thirty-first Congress. Colonel Cork- 
hill, the District Attorney at Washington, who has charge 
of investigating " Giteau's case," was at one time a pupil 
under this veteran officer. He served through the late war 
with distinction, receiving promotion at different times for 
gallant and meritorious service on various battle-fields, and 
specially in the action of Prairie Grove and Bayou Meteo, 
Ark. He has seen hard service in Indian warfare all the 
wav from the Staked Plains to the headwaters of the Mis- 
souri. He is a genial gentleman in and out of the army, and 
devotes the greater portion of his time to matters pertaining 


to science, agriculture, and the general development of the 
new northwest. 

The people throughout the States and other countries can 
now rest assured this section of our country, and more gener- 
ally known as the new northwest, is in the hands of experi- 
enced and well-disposed officers, who have the good of their 
country at heart, as well as their own personal affairs, and 
reputation for bravery and achievements. There are other 
officers on the frontier t deserving of equal credit as those 
above mentioned, but having been in fields at too great a 
distance, the writer does not feel at liberty to make mention 
of matters of fact as they have transpired, that he is not 
quite familiar with. 

Now that we have the unconditional surrender of Sitting 
Bull and all of his war chiefs, the survivors of the 7th Cavalry, 
as well as members of the other regiments in this depart- 
ment, who have for many years defied the murderous hordes 
of hostile savages, and who have fought as heroes fight, for 
friends and home, country and fame, may well take a long 
breath of great relief. 

The writer is now waiting for a special messenger to arrive 
from Fort Buford, in order to get a correct and full account 
of the surrender of " the king of warriors," the wily Sitting 
Bull, whose manoeuvering on the Plains, and in and out of 
the bad lands, and whose aptness for Indian warfare has 
attracted more attention than any other one person in the 
country, except our suffering President, Mr. Garfield. We 
will endeavor to present to the readers of this work a con- 
cise and clear account of this important move on the part 
of our red brother, who for many years has been the Stal- 
wart of the Stalwart Warriors. 


*■■ ■■* 






The Kingly Warrior Surrenders to Major D. H. Brothertcm. 

One of the most important events in recent military ope- 
rations against the hostile Indians in the Northwest, was 
the surrender of Crow King, a subordinate chief under Sit- 
ting Bull, together with all his warriors, war ponies, guns, 
old men, squaws, papooses and camp equipage, to Major D. 
H. Brotherton, of the 7th United States Infantry, in the 
Northwest, during the winter of 1880. 

Crow King was in importance to Sitting Bull among the 
Sioux warriors as Sheridan was to Grant in the late War of 
the Rebellion. The surrender was received with great re- 
joicing by both officers and men of the long-suffering army 
of the frontier, and by the people of the land was hailed 
with joy, as practically the close of the Indian War in the 

Although popular rejoicing in this belief was premature — 
Sitting Bull, with the main body of able-bodied hostiles, 
with his usual good fortune or good generalship, having 
eluded capture and escaped to the British lines — yet the 
rank and importance of Crow King in the Sioux councils 
was so great, his influence with the savage tribes under 
Jrim being almost unbounded, that the effect of his retiring 
with his people from the war-path was most salutary in the 
cause of peace. 

Among Indians of all tribes there are invariably found 
a number of subordinate chiefs who really desire to remain 
on the war-path, and nothing save actual suffering or ne- 
cessity will ever persuade or force them to surrender. The 
presence of a large force of troops in front of them, with 


starvation among their old men, women and children, are the 
only arguments to which their stern natures are accessible. 

In the case of Crow King and his warriors, they were 
driven to extremities. In the dead of a severe winter, with- 
out grass for their ponies, and insufficient shelter for their 
families, with the thermometer 32 degrees below zero, there 
was necessarily great suffering from cold and hunger 
among the non-combatants of tho hostile camp. Food and 
clothing were almost unobtainable in the field, and with the 
British lines closed apparently against them, and a large 
well-disciplined force of United States troops in front of 
them, with ample supplies, and everything necessary to the 
carrying on of a vigorous and successful campaign, their 
alternative was to surrender or to suffer total annihilation. 

Scarcely less than the Indians did the brave men of the 
army suffer from cold and exposure during that fearful win- 
ter's campaign. In the field without tents, with the ther- 
mometer ranging from 32 to 44 degrees below zero, they 
suffered intensely from cold and frost-bites. Yet, with the 
usual stoicism and hardihood of the trained soldier, their suf- 
ferings in these respects were borne uncomplainingly, and 
with true heroism. 

The representatives of the press, who, it must be ob- 
served, invariably reach the front as soon as the army, were 
on hand to chronicle the details of the surrender, and gave 
to the representative papers of the East, full and graphic 
accounts of the scenes in the field, and the solemn pow-wow 
and dance after the surrender. The people of the country 
are greatly interested in the development of the new North- 
west, and consequently follow the operations of the troopa 
on the frontier with friendly interest and anxiety ; no news is 
more anxiously sought after or read with more avidity than 
the published reports from the seat of the Indian wars. 
Being desirous of seeing the country opened to settlement, 
all measures tending to that end are eagerly seconded by 
the people at large, and this is apparent in the universal 
desire for correct information from the scene of army opera- 
tions, against those terrible hindrances in the path of pro- 
gress — the wild Indians of the plains. 


It was at first feared that the surrender of Crow King and 
his band was not a permanent one ; that his warriors would 
again seek the war-path in the early spring, when the grow- 
ing grass would furnish sustenance for their ponies ; but it 
soon became apparent that his personal surrender was made 
in good faith — that he really desired to settle down on a 
reservation and cultivate the arts of peace, in the company 
of his old men, women, and children — a desire that, lauda- 
ble as it was, may have originated from the fact that he was 
sorely wounded, and barely able to sit on his horse. His 
people had unbounded faith in him as a leader. The young 
Graves of his tribe looked up to him with veneration, and 
heeded his counsels, as became the loyal subjects of a brave 
and kingly warrior. Although they acquiesced reluctantly 
in the surrender, yet such was their loyalty to their leader, 
that the United States officers, in charge of negotiations, had 
little to fear from future treachery on the part of his follow- 
ers, save only from a very few of the ugly, discontented, and 
unconquerable warriors that are found attached to every 
tribe, and who undoubtedly, when the favorable opportunity 
came, would desert the reservation for the more congenial 

The late action of the British authorities, in forbidding 
ihem to seek shelter on Canadian soil, undoubtedly planted 
the seeds of peace in the breast of many an unruly savage. 
So long as the British lines were open to them, they could 
penetrate into the United States, commit their bloody deeds 
of rapine and cruelty, murdering white men and stealing 
horses and other stock, then, when pursued, retreating into 
the friendly shelter of the Queen's dominions, knowing that 
the avenging feet of their pursuers must be stayed at the 
border line, as the Government troops could not invade 
Canadian soil without interference with international law, 
which would doubtless be quickly resented by the Domin- 
ion authority. But when this friendly shelter was closed 
against them, and food and clothing gave out ; when the win- 
ter snows descended, and the wild winds blew fierce and 
strong across the wide prairies of the West, then many a 
plumed warrior's heart grew weak ; and as he beheld the 


armed force of dauntless troops under the brave Major G. 
Hges, of the 5th XJ. S. Infantry, arrayed against their weak 
and shivering band, there came upon them a desire for a 
cessation of hostilities. They hungered again for the " flesh- 
pots " of the Indian Agency, and meekly submitted to the 
inevitable, accepting the situation with the coolness and 
philosophy characteristic of Indian nature. 

The surrender of Gall to Major Guido Hges, of the 5th U. 
S. Infantry, is of equal importance in this campaign, and 
more so than that of any other chief under Sitting Bull, ex- 
cept Crow King. He was really the Kilpatrick of the whole 
Sioux nation. Major Ilges found this daring and reckless 
warrior occupying a strong position in the timber near Pop- 
ular Creek Agency. After making a demand for a formal 
surrender, which was at first stubbornly refused by Gall, he 
opened fire from his Gatling guns, together with several vol- 
leys of musketry. 

It was but a short time before an unconditional surrender 
was effected. During these operations against the " Wily 
Gall," on the part of Major Ilges, the chief warrior, " Crow 
King," was an attentive witness, standing on the roof of the 
trader's store at the Popular River Agency, and, strange as it 
may seem, not only sanctioned, but encouraged in every way 
possible, Major Ilges in forcing this surrender, as he could 
not move his own lodges into the Agency until Gall and his 
warriors were out of the wav. 


The Surrender. 

As the terms of his surrender, Crow King demanded 160 
acres of land for every man, woman and child belonging to 
his tribe. He also asked that school-houses might be built 
for the children, and the money obtained from the sale of 
Indian lands devoted to this purpose, and to the education 
of his people. There was no doubt of his earnestness in 
the. matter. The officers in the field, of course, could prom- 
ise him nothing more than that his requests should be laid 
before the proper authorities in Washington. This, for & 




time, gave rise to angry feelings among the warriors, par- 
ticularly among the young chiefs. They stated emphati- 
cally that if they could not have the land, as requested by 
their head chief, they would prefer to brave starvation and 
roam over the plains, and occasionally join a war-party of 
hostiles. The influence of Crow King, aided doubtless by 
the cold weather and the scarcity of provisions, quieted these 
malcontents, and they finally agreed to throw themselves on 
the generosity of the Great Father at Washington, and abide 
by his decision, agreeing to accept and settle upon the reser- 
vation allotted to them by the government, and to take an 
interest in farming, stock-raising, and educating their chil- 
dren. Crow King was growing old, and was enfeebled from 
his wounds. These facts doubtless tended to convince him 
that it was greatly to his interest, as well as for the future 
welfare of his people, to settle down upon a reservation, and 
conform to the rules and regulations of the government. 
As for the young warriors, while outwardly acquiescing in 
the military plans for their future usefulness, it was doubt- 
less with a mental reservation that when the little exigency 
of war, in which they were unwilling participants, had been 
safely passed, and the genial summer breezes came again, 
they would lightly scatter off to join the war-parties on the 
wild prairies in their raids on frontier settlers. Some pos- 
sibly were laying plans to go to Arizona and New Mexico, 
while others may have thought to join the untamed Coman- 
ches and Kiowas in the southern Indian country. 

But whatever may havo been the secret thoughts and pur- 
poses of the discomfited warriors at the formal surrender of 
their chief to the military, they deported themselves in the 
highest style of Indian etiquette, prescribed by custom from 
time immemorial for such interesting occasions. Tricked 
out in their finest paint and feathers, gorgeous in war-bon- 
nets of snowy eagle's feathers, adorned with beads, and their 
half-naked, tawny figures glittering with savage gew-gaws, 
and mounted on ponies whose emaciated forms were decked 
with gaudy colors, they bore themselves with a lofty dignity 
and grave hauteur befitting to a race of royal blood. 

Tet was there a ludicrous element in the pathetic affair. 


The picture of the defeated savages surrendering their arms 
And ponies, as an act of special grace to their powerful cap- 
tors, and gravely dictating the terms of . surrender, demand- 
ing cattle and sheep in payment for their ponies, was a sin- 
gular one ; and a somewhat ridiculous effect of the policy of 
the Government in treating the savages like spoiled children. 
" Til be good, if you'll give me a stick of candy ; if you don't, 
Til be terribly naughty," is the childlike argument em- 
ployed by the anomalous creations of nature, alternately 
known as wards and dependents of the Government, and 
anon figuring as " prisoners of war." The policy adopted 
by the Government, of first yielding to their insolent de- 
mands, then punishing them for disobedience ; again coax- 
ing, petting, and bribing them into good behavior ; then 
again administering deserved chastisement ; and still again 
resorting to bribes and presents to coax them into submis- 
sion, is a course that would speedily make an end of family 
government ; and it is not to be wondered at that the un- 
sophisticated red children of nature should imbibe false and 
mistaken ideas relative to the strength and good judgment 
of the Great Father at Washington. 

After the formal surrender had been effected, with all the 
"" pomp and circumstance " of Indian finery and display, and 
the terms of capitulation agreed upon by the commandant 
of the troops and Crow King (through an interpreter), in a 
council of his warriors, in which the captive chieftain as- 
sumed to himself great credit for gracefully submitting to 
the inevitable, and leading his half-famished people to the 
military lines, a grand " pow-wow " and peace dance was held 
in honor of the event. Rations were divided by the soldiers 
with the prisoners, and every effort made by the humane 
commander of the troops to make comfortable the squaws 
and papooses, together with the sick and helpless of the late 
hostile camp. Wagon transportation was furnished them 
to Fort Buford, D. T., where they were comfortably garri- 

The eloquent plea of the savage warrior, that " the white 
man has kept pushing, and driving, and fighting the red 
man all around and all around, and all over the prairie, until 
he has no place to go," is surely a weighty one. 


Would that the government of the best and most enlight- 
ened nation on the face of the globe would reform its mode 
of treatment of these " wayward children of the forest," who, 
in their inmost hearts, are bloodthirsty assassins and mur- 
derers, yet who are entitled to ordinary justice in business 

It is a standing disgrace to our civilization to alternately 
whip, cheat, bribe, and coax. Treaties should not be made 
with them ; but, if made, should be religiously kept. 

At present writing the Indian problem in the great North- 
west is still unsolved. God grant a fair and speedy solution. 





As a happy finale to the series of sanguinary chapters and 
exciting incidents of savage warfare in the Northwest, the 
author is pleased to append a brief resume of the career of 
Sitting Bull, the monarch of the hostiles, and leader of 
their lawless bands through nearly twenty years of continu- 
ous warfare with the whites ; a career distinguished above 
that of his fellow-hostiles for murder and rapine, yet which 
terminated unexpectedly in his bloodless surrender to Major 
Brotherton, of the regular army, July 19th, 1881. 

Of the early life of Sitting Bull, little is known ; yet there 
is no question of his having been at war with the whites 
since 1862, and during all the period intervening between 
that date and his recent surrender, he has been a steady 
annoyance in the field to the army, and constant source of 
terror and anxiety to the isolated settlers on the remote 
frontier. All the way from Yankton to the headquarters of 
the Missouri, he left traces of his presence in bloodshed and 
burnings. In the year 1865, a passenger on the steamer 
" Effie Deans," en route to Fort Benton, relates that when at 
Bound Butte, Montana, about six hundred miles by river 
below Benton, the steamer was fired upon from a hunting 
camp, comprising about three thousand souls, of whom 
eight hundred were warriors, of Sitting Bull's tribe. Four 
days previously the steamer " General Grant" had passed up > 
several shots were fired into the boat, and four men were 
killed Sitting Bull is supposed to have been encamped at 
this place some two months, this being a favorite place of 
resort for buffalo, elk and other wild game, and here for 


'- ^ A ^ s e 


I I 

I ' 


I . 


i ! 


THE H08TTLE& 67 

years the Sioux, under Sitting Bull and his associate chiefs, 
had repaired in the hunting season to seek the spoils of the 

Sitting Bull's record, from the earliest date of which men- 
tion is made of him, is that of a vindictive and determined 
enemy of the white man, yet, previously to the year 1866, he 
had not attained distinction above his fellow chiefs, or gained 
a tithe of the overshadowing fame that has placed his name 
on the highest pinnacle of savage greatness. 

In the year 1866, Sitting Bull, a warrior of the Uncapapa 
Sioux, attained wide-spread notoriety throughout the fron- 
tier posts and settlements, by means of his murderous raids 
and savage cruelties. From that time he has held high 
rank as a leader of the hostile Sioux — revered by his own 
people as a skillful general, wise in council and powerful in 
war, and dreaded by the whites as a cruel and relentless 
enemy. Of late years, a series of uninterrupted successes 
in the field, culminating in the Custer massacre of 1876, gave 
him a prominence not hitherto enjoyed by any hostile chief, 
and rendered his name a familiar but dreaded household 
word in every hamlet in America. Sitting Bull was thought 
to be invincible, hence his recent surrender, brought about 
though it was by the subtle agencies of want and hunger, 
aided as it was by the firm attitude of the Canadian author- 
ities, who refused longer to permit his followers to come 
and go at pleasure upon British soil, was a surprise as un- 
expected as it was agreeable to the country at large. 

The bulk of our present adult aboriginal population were 
born in savagery, and have lived in savagery. Try as they 
will, they cannot entirely subdue the savage instincts to 
roam at will, to defy restraint, and to inAulge their lawless 
appetites for blood and plunder. Sitting Bull's influence 
for evil among all the aboriginal tribes had been unbounded. 
He had ever made it his boast that he would never go upon 
a reservation or make peace with the whites. — a resolution 
to which he tenaciously adhered. His nomadic and unre- 
strained life of freedom on the plains was a constant lure to 
those Indians who, though settled upon agencies, and os- 
tensibly engaged in cultivating the arts of peace, yet could 


not wholly conquer the natural savage longing for a life of 
unrestrained and careless liberty. His camp-fires in the 
wild fastnesses of the far Northwest were alluring lights to 
the wild and restless spirits, whose untamed natures chafed 
and fretted under the unwonted restraint of agency rule. 
His bold example inspired the pining warriors on the reser- 
vations to break away from the civilizing influences there 
brought to bear upon him, and to seek by his council-fires 
in the wilderness pursuits moje congenial. 

With the freshening of the grass in the spring, large num- 
bers of the young and able-bodied warriors of the tribes 
confined at the various Indian agencies on the Missouri, 
would set forth to join his lawless hordes on their annual 
round of plunder, and under cover of his name to prey upon 
the exposed settlements, and destroy the lives of any luck- 
less whites who, by chance, came within the scope of their 

It had long been a recognized fact, both in the Military 
and Interior Departments, that an Indian absent without 
leave from his proper reservation, was necessarily an Indian 
hostile, de facto and de jure ; and since it was manifestly im- 
possible to prevent the agency Sioux from slipping away 
during the season of buffalo hunting, and attaching them- 
selves to the hostile forces, the capture of Sitting Bull, or 
the breaking up of his hostile rendezvous in the Northwest, 
became a strategic measure of overshadowing importance 
in all plans devised by the military authorities for subju- 
gating, or by the officials of the Interior Department for 
benefiting and civilizing the Indians. 

Mutual plans were devised by both Departments to rem- 
edy the grave evil# arising from Agency Indians rallying to 
the medicine banner of Sitting Bull, and sharing with his 
restless followers the spoils and plunder of the war-path; 
but all to no avail. The evil increased alarmingly. The Mis- 
souri River Agencies became but bases of supplies for Sit- 
ting Bull's insolent army, from whence were drawn, by the 
hands of professedly peaceful Indians, arms and munitions 
of war, clothing, and provisions. The ranks of the hostiles 
were increased to an unusual extent during the hunting sea- 


son, by the accession of large numbers of able-bodied war- 
riors, whose winter subsistence was derived from the bounty 
of the government. Those who remained upon the reser- 
vations evinced a* uneasy and discontented spirit, until, at 
length, the signs of disaffection at the larger Agencies, such 
as Standing Rock, Spotted Tail, Red Cloud, etc., containing 
then some 40,000 Indians, became so marked that a general 
outbreak was feared, unless steps were promptly taken to 
subdue the outlaws under Sitting Bull, and compel them to 
settle down upon some designated spot, to be selected by 
the government. Accordingly, in December, 1875, the Sec- 
retary of the Interior notified the hostiles that they must, 
before the close of the following January, come into the re- 
servations, " or a military force would be sent out to com- 
pel them to come in." This peremptory order was met with 
the scorn and defiance that had characterized the demeanor 
of the hostiles in all their communications with the white 
man's government. As a last recourse, therefore, on the ex- 
piration of the stated time, the Secretary of War was form- 
ally notified that these Indians were turned over to* the mil- 
itary authorities, for such action as might be deemed proper 
for their subjugation and chastisement. 

The campaign of 1876 was then organized by General 
Sheridan, on the plan already described at some length in 
this volume, by which, in the simultaneous movement of 
three distinct columns from Montana, Dakota, and the 
Platte, toward a common centre, where was supposed to be lo- 
cated the camp of the hostiles, a crushing blow could be ad- 
ministered to the forlorn hope of savage obduracy, seeking 
to escape the fate that had been decreed to the red man in 
the remnants of his once wide domain, the alternative of 
either civilization or extermination. The movements of 
these columns, the repulse of General Crook, and the tragic 
death of General Custer and his men, which formed the bit- 
ter fruits of this unfortunate expedition, have been already 
described in detail in these pages. Suffice it, then, to say, 
that, after the battle, the victorious savages proceeded north- 
ward, and crossed the boundary line into the Dominion of 
Canada, and quartered themselves upon the bounty of her 


Majesty the Queen of England. Here Sitting Bull and his 
followers remained in peace through the following year, re- 
fusing the overtures of Chief Joseph to take part in the Nez 
Perces campaign of 1877. In the stirring events of that 
campaign, the opening fight at Big Hole, Howard's long and 
arduous pursuit, and final success, with Miles' aid, in cap- 
turing Joseph and his band, together with the later fight at 
Bear-Paw Mountain, between Lame Deer, a Sioux, and the 
troops under General Miles, engrossed, for a time, public 
attention, and the conqueror of Custer was left to his repose. 
But not long did quiet reign. 

The followers of the stoic chieftain began to cross the lines, 
commit depredations on the people of Montana, and elude 
capture and punishment by escaping to their leader's camp 
at Wood Mountain. . Grave questions of international law 
now puzzled the authorities at Washington, and to avoid 
complications with a border territory, as well as to insure 
protection to the helpless settlers south of the Canadian 
boundary line, it was decided to make an effort to effect 
by diplomacy what force of arms had failed to bring about, 
and to send, to treat with Sitting Bull, a commission of such 
dignity and character, that he would necessarily be con- 
vinced of the truth and reliability of its promises and pre- 

Leave was accordingly obtained from the British authori- 
ties for the entrance of the commission into the Canadian 
territory. The followers of Sitting Bull at this time com- 
prised but a moiety of those who had participated in the 
Custer massacre, many of the warriors who had there glut- 
ted their fiendish thirst for blood and torture having re- 
turned to the agencies to which they belonged, and wwe 
there re-enacting the role of good Indians, by submissively 
devouring the rations issued by a magnanimous govern- 
ment to its " wayward children." 

The Peace Commission to Sitting Bull was composed of 
General A. H. Terry, the commander of the defeated Dakota 
column in the campaign of the previous year, and Hon. A. 
G. Lawrence, of Massachusetts. The embassy proceeded 
with an escort to the British line, and were there met by a 


^battalion of the Northwestern mounted police, who guided 
them to Fort Walsh — and here was presented the extraordi- 
nary spectacle of a powerful government sending overtures 
of peace and reconciliation to the leading outlaw and free- 
booter of the country, by the hand of the military commander 
whose troops he had defeated by force of arms. Much 
trouble was experienced in obtaining the consent of Sitting 
Bull and his leading chiefs to an interview ; but this was 
finally gained through the intercession of the British officers 
at the fort, and on the 17th of October an interview was held 
within the limits of the fort. 

The renegade chieftain received his distinguished visitors 
with every mark of savage discourtesy. He haughtily re- 
fused their proffered hands, demanded that they should not 
sit behind the table, at which they had seated themselves, 
and sneeringly told them to speak the truth to the assem- 
bled chiefs. The ambassadors, on* behalf of their govern- 
ment, then presented the reasons why the hostiles should 
<5ease their hostile acts, return to the United States, and join 
the agencies. 

The honorable treatment meted out to the tribes who had 
surrendered, the ever-recurring bounty of the government, 
the daily rations and frequent gifts, were painted in glowing 

It was promised to the Canadian refugees, on behalf of 
the United States Government, that no harm should befall 
Any of their number who would consent to cross the line, 
and peacefully take up their abode at any of the agencies. 
Not only would they be protected from harm, but many 
favors and privileges would be granted them; while the 
proceeds from the sale of their ponies and arms, which 
they would be required to surrender, would be applied to 
their benefit. These proposals were rejected emphatically 
and insolently, and the commission was, so far as any good 
results were attained, a complete failure. 

During the remainder of that, and of the following year 
{1878), Sitting Bull and his band remained quietly on the 
northern side of the boundary line, only a few of his war- 
riors occasionally crossing to American soil in pursuit of 


buffalo, and their stay was never prolonged. Reports of his. 
coming in force were, however, frequently rife among the 
frontiersmen, and in the summer a reconnoissance of troops 
in force was made north of the Missouri, without result, 
however, and as the hostiles seemed inclined to keep the 
peace, and remain permanently north of the line, operations 
against them were, for the time, suspended, by order of Gen- 
eral Sherman. Trouble with the Bannock Indians having 
then arisen, and the hostile remnant of the Nez Perces mak- 
ing demonstrations of hostilities, Sitting Bull once more 
dropped out of public notice. 

For the protection of the settlers in northern Montana, a 
cordon of forts had been commenced in 1877, which were 
now nearly completed, and there was every reason to believe 
that the former scene of the Sioux troubles — the valley of 
the Yellowstone and its tributaries — would not be again 
entered by them. But north of their former field of opera- 
tions they could roam unrestrainedly, while the stores of 
government supplies at Poplar River and other outlying 
posts were never safe from their raids. 

In the opening of the year 1879 a panic prevailed among 
the white settlers near the border, in consequence of large 
bands of Sitting Bull's Indians crossing the line and com- 
mitting depredations, killing the cattle of the settlers, steal- 
ing horses, etc. General Miles was accordingly sent to take 
the field, with troops sufficient to repel and overcome any 
body of Indians, however large ; and on the 12th of July he 
crossed to the northern bank of the Missouri with his com- 
mand, in the vicinity of Old Fort Reck, and five days later 
the advance detachment, under Lieutenant Clark, struck a, 
large body of Indians between Beaver Creek and Milk River, 
and a spirited skirmish ensued. Sitting Bull was in com- 
mand in person, and the battle would have ended disas- 
trously for the whites, as they were largely outnumbered — 
but on the near approach of the main body of the troops he 
prudently withdrew to the north bank of Milk River, thence 
retreating to the British possessions. Many Indians were 
captured in the retreat, and the operations of that summer 
were attended with gratifying results. The bands of half- 


"breeds, who had by their nefarious traffic with the hostiles 
kept them well supplied with arms and ammunition, were 
either captured or dispersed, and their traffic broken up. 
On the 28th of July, Long Dog, an emissary from Sitting 
Bull's camp, reported that the hostiles had elected to remain 
permanently north of the line, and General Miles was as- 
sured by the commandant of the mounted police that no 
further apprehension need be entertained of hostile raids — 
assurances which the facts in the end fully justified. 

During the summer of 1880, there were a few isolated 
cases of murder and theft, in which the hand of the Sioux 
was apparent ; but the surrender to General Miles, in the 
autumn, of the notorious Rain-in-the-Face, with many 
other chiefs and thousands of their followers, virtually set- 
tled the Indian problem in the Northwest. 

When Rain-in-the-Face crossed the line and surrendered, 
Gaul and his followers crossed also, but the latter went to 
Poplar Creek instead of Fort Keogh, and though at first ex- 
pressing a willingness to surrender, he delayed from time to 
time, until January 2d, 1881, he yielded to the persuasions 
o£ Colonel Ilges and his frost-bitten soldiers, and a few shots 
from his Gatling guns, and gave himself up. Crow King had 
previously surrendered, and Sitting Bull was left alone in his 
glory, and with a handful of dispirited followers, in his old 
retreat at Wood Mountain. He, too, now submits to the in- 
evitable, recognizing in the rapid development of the North- 
west country, the signs of the inevitable fate that thrusts 
upon the red man the alternative of civilization or extermi- 
nation. With «his handful of half- starved followers, he 
reluctantly accepts the bounty of the government he has so 
long defied, yet remjains sullen and defiant to the last. 

Through the efforts of the scout, Louis Legare, mainly, 
the once powerful chieftain of the Sioux was induced to 
come into the lines and surrender to the military, kind 
treatment and immunity from punishment for his past mis- 
deeds having been previously guaranteed him. With the 
last remnant of his people, some two hundred souls, old 
men, women and children, the old war-chief arrived at Fori 
Buford, Dakota, at noon, on July 19th, 1881. At the head 


of the mournful cortege rode Sitting Bull, Four Horns, Red 
Thunder and other sub- chiefs, on their war ponies, and 
following came six army wagons loaded with the squaws and 
children, and behind them came some twenty-five of Louis 
Xiegare's Red River carts, containing their baggage. 

They presented a forlorn and pitiful appearance — the 
great Sitting Bull himself being very dirty and very hungry, 
his face wearing a sullen, bull-dog expression, his dress and 
appearance bearing marks of the hardships and destitution 
he has recently experienced. Yet, until called upon to sur- 
render his arms, he preserved under this, the most trying 
ordeal to a savage, a dignified and unbroken silence. Thus 
•ended the war in the Northwest The closing of the five 
years' campaign against the most remarkable leader of mod- 
ern times is tersely chronicled in the following official dis- 
patches : 

Fort Buford, D. T., July 14, 1881.— Gen. A. H. Terry, 
•Commanding Department Dakota, Fort Snelling : Just re- 
ceived a dispatch from Legare, dated 12th inst.; says he is 
en route with Sitting Bull, Four Horns and Red Thunder; 
in all, 6 chiefs, 40 families — about 200 in all, men, women 
and children. He says they came from Lake Qu'Appelle, 
starving. Will send in this morning to meet them with 
rations. Messenger says they are about sixty miles out. 
(Signed) D. H. Brotherton, Maj. 7th Infantry, Com. 

Fort Buford, D. T., July 19. — Gen. A. H. Terry, Com- 
manding Department of Dakota, Fort Snelling : Sitting Bull 
and his followers surrendered to me at noon to-day. 

(Signed) D. H. Brotherton, Maj. 7th Infantry, Com. 

While the last act of the drama, the final scene in Sitting 
Bull's career as a warrior, was enacted at noon on July 20th, 
when, by the hand of his little son, he delivered to Major 
Brotherton the rifle he had carried throughout so many 
bloody fields. This being done, the great chieftain spoke as 
follows : 

"I surrender this rifle to you through my young son, whom 
I now desire to teach in this manner that he has become a 
friend of the Americans. I wish him to learn the habits of 


the whites and to be educated as their sons are educated. I 
wish it to be remembered that I was the last man of my tribe 
to surrender my rifle. This boy has given it to you, and he 
now wants to know how he is going to make a living. What- 
ever you have to give- or whatever you have to say, I would 
like to receive or hear now, for I don't wish to be kept in 
darkness longer. I have sent several messengers in here 
from time to time, but none of them have returned with 
news. The other chiefs, Crow King and Gaul, have not want- 
ed me to come, and I have never received good news from 
here. I now wish to be allowed to live this side of the line 
or the other, as I see fit. I wish to continue my old life of 
lunting, but would like to be allowed to trade on both sides 
of the line. This is my country, and I don't wish to be com- 
pelled to give it up. My heart was very sad at having to 
leave the great mother's country. She has been a friend to 
me, but I want my children to grow up in our native country, 
and I also wish to feel that I can visit two of my friends on 
the other side of the line, viz.: Major Walsh and Captain 
McDonald, whenever I wish, and would like to trade with 
Louis Legare, as he has always been a friend to me. I wish 
to have all my people live together upon one reservation of 
our own on the Little Missouri. I left several families at 
Wood Mountain and between there and Qu'Appelle. I have 
many people among the Yanktonais at Poplar Creek, and 
I wish all them and those who have gone to Standing Rock 
to be collected together upon one reservation. My people 
liave many of them been bad. All are good now that their 
arms and ponies have been taken from them. (Speaking to 
Major Brotherton): 

" You own this ground with me, and we must try and help 
^ach other. I do not wish to leave here until I get all the 
people I left behind and the Uncapapas now at Poplar Creek. 
I would like to have my daughter, who is now at Fort Yates, 
sent up here to visit me, as also eight men now there (men- 
tioning their names), and I would like to know that Louis 
Legare is to be rewarded for his services in bringing me and 
my people in here." 

Sitting Bull and his people have been sent to the Indian 


Agency of Standing Rock, Dakota, on the Missouri River, 
where Rain-in-the-Face, Gaul, Long-Dog and other chiefs of 
his tribe, with their followers, have preceded him. 

At this agency there are now fully 7,000 Indians, and 
though "finis " may now be appended to the last chapter of 
the history of the Indian wars in the Northwest, yet, in 
dealing with these pent-up savages, soothing the malcon- 
tents, and restraining the unruly spirits there confined from 
deeds of violence, in helping and instructing those suscepti- 
ble of civilizing influences, and benefiting and christian- 
izing all, the Interior Department has a task as weighty, a 
labor as arduous, and a problem more puzzling, than that 
just worked out by the military, in their subjugation and 


Officers in the Field against Sitting BuU since 1872. 

The commanding officer of the Department of Dakota, 
Brevet-Major-General Alfred H. Terry, is one of the Briga- 
dier-Generals in the regular army. He entered the volunteer 
service at the beginning of the late civil war, in 1861, as 
Colonel of the 2d Connecticut Volunteers. In 1862 he was 
promoted to a Brigadier-General, and in 1864 to a Major- 
General of Volunteers, and in 1835 he was made a Brigadier- 
General in the regular army. In accepting his commission 
he also received the following, which Congress, by joint 
resolution, passed as a vote of thanks to him and the officers 
under his command : " For the unsurpassed gallantry and 
skill exhibited by them in the attack upon Fort Fisher, and 
the brilliant and decisive victory by which that important 
work has been captured from the Rebel forces, and placed 
in the possession and under the authority of the United 
States, and for their long and faithful services and unswerv- 
ing devotion to the cause of the country in the midst of its 
greatest difficulties and dangers." He was made a Brevet- 
Major-General in 1886, for gallant and meritorious services 
in the capture of Wilmington, North Carolina. He has been 


in command of this military department since 1873, and the 
country has been fully advised at various times in regard 
to important operations against the hostiles. He needs no 
comment nor compliment from our pen. 

Of the officers who have been stationed on the extreme 
frontier of civilization at times during the past ten years, 
for the purpose of opening and protecting the new North- 
west, we will make mention, in order to more fully explain 
to our readers that the work has not been confined to a very 
small number of officers, and that several of our best regi- 
ments have been brought to the front to take part in con- 
quering the Sioux warriors. Among the first that were in 
command was Brigadier-General W. B. Hazen, recently pro- 
moted from the colonelcy of the 6th United States Infantry, 
And now chief signal officer. He was made a Brevet-Major- 
General in 1865. 

He was appointed from the military academy at West 
Point in 1859. In 1859 he was promoted for gallant conduct 
in several engagements with Indians in Texas. During the 
war he was promoted at different, times for gallant and meri- 
torious services in the battles of Chickamauga, Ga., Chatta- 
nooga, Tenn.; in the capture of Atlanta, Ga., and Fort McAl- 
lister, Ga., and. for long and continued service of the highest 
character, and for special gallantry and service at Fort 
McAllister. In his promotion the infantry lost one of its 
ablest commanders, and one of the most gentlemanly officers 
in the service of the United States ; but the Signal Service 
gains one of the brightest stars in the constellation at 

Daniel Huston, Lieutenant-Colonel of the 6th Infantry, 
was appointed from the military academy at West Point in 
1848. At the beginning of the late war he was distinguished 
in the battle of Wilson's Creek, Mo., for gallant conduct 
He was promoted for special gallant and meritorious service 
during the siege of Vicksburg, and later, for gallant and 
meritorious service during the war. During his service in 
this department he was in command at Forts Buford and 
Stevenson. He is highly esteemed by the old pioneers and 
citizens throughout the Northwest. 


Brevet-Colonel Orlando H. Moore, Major of the 6tli In- 
fantry, entered the regular army in 1856. Was appointed 
from the State of Michigan. He was promoted at different 
times during the war for gallant and meritorious services, 
and for special gallantry in action at Tebbs Bend, Ky. He 
has done most excellent service in the Northwest in bring- 
ing the hostiles in, and is not only one of the bravest of the 
brave, but is a most courteous and faithful officer. 

Brevet-Major-General David S. Stanley, Colonel of the 
22d Infantry, was among the first to have a command in the 
Northwest, after the right of way was granted to the North- 
ern Pacific Bailroad. He was appointed to the regular army 
from the military academy at West Point in 1852. He was 
among the most distinguished officers in the war of the re- 
bellion, and received rapid promotion for gallant and meri- 
torious services in the battles of Stone Biver, Tenn.; Besaca,. 
Ga.. ^ufPs Station, Ga.; and Franklin, Tenn. 

He commanded the ^reat expedition in 1873, from Forts 
Bice and Lincoln, that penetrated farther into the hitherto 
unknown western wilds than ever our army had been before. 
The trail he made has since been known as " the Stanley- 
trail," and has, more or lesb, been a guide to the engineers 
and pioneers in locating a permanent line for the Northern 
Pacific Bailroad from the Missouri Biver to Pompey's Pil- 
lar, in the headwaters of the Yellowstone. The 22d Infantrjr 
did most excellent and hard service, both officers, and men, 
while stationed at different military posts in this depart- 

Brevet-Brigadier-General Thomas L. Crittenden, Colonel 
of the 17th Infantry, came with his regiment to this depart- 
ment in an early day, which can now be looked upon as the 
veteran regiment in the Northwest. General Crittenden was 
a Major-General of Volunteers during the war, and has had 
vast experience in military as well as in political affairs in 
his own State. He was promoted for gallant and meritori- 
ous service in the battle of Stone Biver, Tenn. Ever zeal-, 
ous, and one of the best military advisers and administra- 
tive officers in the Northwest. 

W. P. Carlin, Lieut. -Colonel of the 17th Infantry, was & 


Brevet-Major-General in the late civil war, and was pro- 
moted at different times for gallant and meritorious services 
in the battles of Chattanooga, Tenn. ; Jonesboro', Ga. ; and 
Bentonville, N. C. He entered the regular army from the 
Military Academy at West Point, in 1850. He has been 
commanding officer at various military stations in Dakota 
Territory, and, until quite recently, at Fort Yates, or more 
generally known to the outside world as the Standing Rock 
Agency. He is a strictly moral and temperate man, and his 
duties have at times been onerous, but his official career has 
always been approved by the Lieut. -General and General of 
the Army. 

Robert E. A. Crofton, previous to 1879, was the Major of 
the 17th Infantry, while he was serving in this department 
in earlier days. He was promoted at different times during 
the war of secession, for gallant and meritorious services in 
the battles of Shiloh, Tenn ; Chickamauga, Ga. ; and Mission. 
Ridge, Tenn. He is now Lieut. -Colonel of the 13th Infantry* 
He is not only a brave, but a model and gentlemanly officer* 

The 2d U. S. Cavalry has been on duty in this department 
since 1876, stationed at Forts Custer and Keogh, Montana 
Territory. Brevet-Major-General Johli W. Davidson was 
Colonel of the regiment from March, 1879, up to the time of 
his death in St. Paul, but a few days since. He was ap- 
pointed to the regular army from the Military Academy at 
West Point, in 1845. He was promoted at different times 
during the war of the rebellion, for gallant and meritorious 
services in the battles of Gaines Mill, Va. ; Golding's Farm, 
Va. ; and the capture of Little Rock, Ark. He was a strict 
disciplinarian, and did much to elevate the morale of the 
army. He died a few days since in St. Paul, Minn., while 
en route east to recuperate his broken health. By his death 
the cavalry loses one of its ablest commanders, the army 
one of its noblest veterans, and his bereaved family a kind- 
hearted husband and father. The other field officers of this 
regiment have experienced equally as hard service as those 
of other regiments, and have displayed great energy and 
skill in bringing this Indian war to a close. Their service 
in the field has been in the extreme Northwest, at times near 
the British Possessions. 


In 1876, after the battles of the Little Big Horn, this de- 
partment was reinforced by the 5th XJ. S. Infantry, com- 
manded by Brig. -General Nelson A. Miles, then Colonel of 
the regiment. He has deservedly been promoted for special 
gallant and meritorious conduct in the Northwest. By his 
promotion the infantry loses a brilliant eagle, but the list of 
Brigadiers gains a bright star. It was through his general- 
ship that Chief Joseph and his band were captured. 

Brevet-Brig. -General Joseph Whistler, the Lieut.-CoL of 
the 5th Infantry, has a record well known. He entered the 
regular army from the Military Academy at West Point in 
1846. He was promoted for gallantry on the battle-field of 
Cherubusco, in the Mexican War, and again promoted for 
gallant and meritorious services in front of Petersburg, Va. 
He has been in command at Fort Keogh most of the time 
since it was built, and has also taken no little part in active 
field operations in forcing Sitting Bull and his warriors to 
their final surrender. He is genial as he Is brave, and 
always in good humor. Western people will always hail 
with joy the veteran " General Joseph Whistler." 

The 7th U. S. Infantry has done long and effective service 
in the Northwest under command of Brevet-Major-General 
John Gibbon, its brave and popular Colonel. For the past 
several years a greater portion of the regiment have been 
serving in Western Montana. 

General John Gibbon entered the regular army by ap- 
pointment from the Military Academy at West Point in 
July, 1847. He was assigned to duty in the 4th Artillery, 
and during the late civil war he was promoted to a Major- 
General of Volunteers, and special promotion from time to 
time for gallant and meritorious service in the battles of 
Antietam, Md.; Fredericksburg, Va.; Gettysburg, Pa.; Spott- 
sylvania, Va.; and in the capture of Petersburg, Va. He is 
an excellent administrative military officer, and his services 
have been invaluable in the Northwest, having taken an 
active part in several important expeditions against the hos- 
tile Sioux. 

The Lieut. -Colonel of this regiment, Chas. C. Gilbert, was 
appointed to the regular army from the Military Academy 


at West Point in July, 1846, and in the late civil war was 
promoted to a Brig. -General of Volunteers. He was distin- 
guished for gallant and meritorious services in the battles of 
Shiloh, Tenn.; Richmond, Ky.; Springfield, Mo.; Pittsburg 
Landing, Tenn.; and in the battle of Perry ville, Ky. He now 
commands at the Standing Bock Indian Agency, on the Mis- 
souri River, and more recently known as Fort Yates. About 
seven thousand Indians are located at this agency, under the 
immediate charge of Major McLaughlin, well known in 
Dakota Territory as an experienced and efficient Indian 
agent He is assisted by the Rev. Father Chrysostrom, a 
Catholic missionary, who has done good work in the way of 
organizing schools at different stations in the Northwest. It 
is expected that Sitting Bull will be sent to this agency in a 
Tery few days. 

David H. Brotherton is the Major of the 7th Infantry, 
having commenced his career in the regular army in July, 
1854, after graduating at the Military Academy at West 
Point. He was distinguished at different times for gallant 
conduct during the war of the rebellion, and particularly in 
the battle of Valverde, N. M. In his knowledge and judg- 
ment of Indian affairs he stands pre-eminent ; and in the 
general management of the wild and untamed tribes, he has 
no superior among the field officers in this department. Dur- 
ing the past winter, and up to the present time, it has been his 
decree to take an active part in negotiating with and forcing 
Sitting Bull and his followers to this final surrender. It was 
Major Brotherton who compelled the surrender of " Crow 
King, chief warrior of Sitting Bull's tribes," last January, 
At Fort Buford. 

"Crow King," to use an army phrase, was the Lieut- 
General of the Sioux warriors, under the leadership of Sit- 
ting Bull. He surrendered, however, under the most earnest 
protestations, and against the positive orders of Sitting Bull 
The fact is, he could no longer stem the tide of coming events 
that were destined to roll against him. The almost naked 
and half-starved condition of his old men, women and chil- 
dren, together with the gallant and intrepid Major Ilges, 
with his " veteran and brave frost-bitten blue-coats," " Qager 


for the fray," arrayed against him, were the real causes 
which led to his unconditional surrender. The capture of 
this indefatigable and uncompromising warrior was the 
breaking of the backbone of the Indian Tfrar in the Sioux 
nation, and the country at large extends a vote of thanks to 
the veteran Majors Ilges and Brotherton for their energy 
and unswerving perseverance in effecting this surrender. 

Capt. Thos. B. Dewees, of the 2d Cavalry, also took an 
active part in this surrender, marching from Fort Keogh 
with his troop, most of the time in snow knee-deep, with 
more or less suffering from frost-bites, and at one time being 
compelled to place 48 men of his troop in the hospital. 

He, together with his troop, are entitled to great credit 
for their personal bravery and enduring the hardships of 
that winter's campaign. Not until about this time did Chief 
Gaul make up his mind that he had be'tter begin to make 
his peace with the Federal authorities. In a message to 
Major Ilges at one time, he stated in his dignified but insult- 
ing manner, quite characteristic with war chiefs, that the 
white dog soldiers would not fight in the winter — too cold 
weather — they cried too much — placing his fingers on his 
face and eyes, showing how the tears would trickle down 
their faces, saying no good fight in cold weather, and a- 
heap-o'-snow. Little did this artful and skillful old warrior 
dream that Major Ilges had his Gatling guns within range 
with plenty of canister and shell, and that the boys in blue 
were ready to fire by platoons, or at will. But such was the 
case, and it required but a very short space of time to con- 
vince Chief Gaul, to his entire satisfaction, that it was best 
for him and his braves to make an unconditional surrender, 
which was soon effected, but not until a few shots were fired 
from the Gatling guns and a volley or two of musketry. In 
response to this call, came the surrender of " Chief Gaul," 
together with all the lodges that were with him. 

Nothing now remained to be done to close the Indian war 
in the Northwest but to capture the leading chief, " Sitting 
Bull," who was still behind and within a few days' march of 
the British lines, but not without his best and fleetest ponies 
and best guns, which were of the latest and most improved 


It is believed in military circles that about forty lodges of 
his followers, with their horses, ponies and guns, are yet 
across the boundary line, even now since the surrender of 
Bull himself, and that they will never be given up to our 
authorities. It is, however, hard to conjecture just what 
course he will drift his influence, what he has left, with this 
remnant of his once powerful tribes, that held sway over the 
entire Sioux nation. 

In the capture of " Chief Gaul," Major Guido Ilges is en- 
titled to great credit for his personal bravery and endurance 
in the field, the thermometer varying from 33 to 44 degrees 
below zero, also, the officers and men alike under his com- 
mand. Major Ilges is a Prussian by birth, and was com- 
missioned in the regular army in 1861. In the civil war he 
was distinguished for gallantry and meritorious services in 
the battles of the "Wilderness" and " Spottsylvania," Va., 
for which he received promotion at the respective times. 
He is one of the bravest and most conscientious officers on 
the frontier, and the people in the Northwest extend him 
a hearty vote of thanks. 

Captain Walter Clifford, who received Sitting Bull at the 
time of his surrender in the field, was born in the State of 
New York, and commenced his career in the U. S. Army in 
1860. He served with distinction during the civil war, and 
was promoted for gallant and meritorious service in the 
battle of Chickamauga, Ga. He is a Captain in the 7th U. S. 
Infantry, has experienced his share of hard service against 
the hostile Sioux during the past several years, and is highly 
esteemed as a brave, daring and gentlemanly officer. 

Brevet-Brigadier-General Thomas H. Buger, Colonel of 
the 18th United States Infantry, was appointed to the regu- 
lar army in 1854. He was promoted several times during 
the war of the Rebellion, and more particularly for gallant 
and meritorious services in the battles of " Franklin, Tehn., 
and Gettysburg, Pa." He was at one time commanding offi- 
cer at West Point. He came to this department in 1878 
with his regiment, taking station on Milk Biver, M. T., near 
the extreme northern boundary line, and has since built the 
post known as Fort Assinaboine, M. T.* This regiment has 


done hard and effective service in the field since it came to 
this department. The building of Forts Assinaboine, on 
Milk River, Custer and Keogh, on the Yellowstone, really 
was unlocking the doors and taking possession of the great 
Sioux nation. For several years before the " Battle of the 
Little Big Horn" (1876), Lieutenant-General Sheridan at 
different times recommended the establishment of these 
posts, and more especially the two latter, in order that our 
military might be garrisoned nearer the field of direct ope- 
rations against Sitting Bull, so as to more effectually cope 
with his hostile bands and war-parties, then scattered over 
the entire Northwest, and it was not until after that memor- 
able battle that he succeeded in getting Congress to author- 
ize the sum and make the proper appropriations. 

So it will be seen that the military* genius and foresight- 
edness of our own Field General was, at the proper time, 
more than equal to that of General Sitting Bull. Sheridan 
was hampered by Congress, while Sitting Bull could act 
with a free will of his own, unhampered by any power save 
the forces that were contending against him. His authority 
was supreme, and he fully commanded the situation. 

To return to the field officers of the 18th Infantry, there 
is Henry S. Black, the Lieutenant-Colonel of the regiment, 
who entered the regular army in July, 1847, from the Mili- 
tary Academy at West Point, and was promoted at different 
times during the war for faithful and meritorious services, 
and at one time was the Colonel of the 6th California Vol- 

Major John S. Poland, of this regiment, was appointed to 
the regular army in May, 1861, after his academic course at 
West Point. He served with distinction during the war of 
secession, especially in the battles of " Antietam and Shep- 
ardstown Ford, Md.; Fredericksburg and .Chancellorville, 
Va."; and has been stationed in Northern Dakota and Mon- 
tana most of the time since 1872, and for years belonged to 
the 6th U. S. Infantry that was also stationed in this depart- 
ment for several years. Major Poland has been command- 
ing officer at three several posts in this section of the coun- 
try, and has always been considered a very cautious and 


good administrative officer. He is strictly moral and tem- 
perate, and a genial officer and gentleman. 

Major E. B. Kirk, Assistant-Quartermaster in charge of 
depot of supplies and army transportation, has been sta- 
tioned at Bismarck and Fort Buford for the past several 
years, and has held a very important position, having charge 
of forwarding supplies to the front by both river, rail and 
overland trains. He was appointed to the regular army from 
Ohio, and was promoted during the civil war for faithful and 
meritorious services in the Q. M. department and in the 
field. He is an energetic, faithful officer, and at all times 
has a watchful eye over the affairs in his department. 

Among the many distinguished field officers who have 
done very great and efficient service outside of this military 
department, which has had a good and wholesome effect up- 
on the Indians all along the frontier to the northern bound- 
ary line, is Brevet-Major-General Benjamin H. Grierson, 
Colonel of the 10th U. S. Cavalry. His operations against 
the Kiowas, Comanches and, worst of all, the most horrid 
and filthy wild Apaches, have had a most telling effect upon 
the various tribes outside of the particular section of coun- 
try that his operations have principally been confined to. 
General Grierson entered the volunteer army in 1862, as 
Major of a regiment of cavalry from the State of Illinois, and 
for gallant and faithful service during the war he was pro- 
moted several times, and in 1867 he was made a Brevet-Ma- 
jor-General for special gallant and meritorious services in 
the raid through the entire State of Mississippi. Many read- 
ers of this volume will well remember the famous cav- 
alry raider that penetrated central Mississippi, crossing the 
Tallahatchie with his Brigade of Light Horse Cavalry at 
midnight and marching on to the Balize in a most daring 
and fearless manner. It was announced at the time that 
this raid very nearly broke the backbone of the rebellion. 
His most distinguished services of late have been in operat- 
ing against Victorio's band of wild Apaches along the Rio 
Grand river and in old Mexico, of which the country have 
been advised at various times. He came into the State of 
Kansas with his regiment in 1868, and has ever since been 


in active service subjugating the hostiles and protecting the 
settlers on the frontier. He is strictly moral and temperate, 
unpretending, and one of the best of army disciplinarians. 
The officers of his regiment are faithful, brave and zealous 
as those of any in the army. They have experienced hard and 
continuous service in subjugating the hostiles in the south- 
ern Indian country, and more especially the wild Apaches, 
Kiowas and Comanches, and for gallant and meritorious 
services they are entitled to a vote of thanks. 

The reader in carefully studying the first section of this 
volume, " General Van Couvnor," will be able to form a very- 
fair conclusion in regard to the various and arduous duties 
that have been devolved upon General Grierson and the 
officers of the 10th Cavalry since 1868. 


The First Photograph of Sitting Bull, and His Age. 

While the writer is making every effort to procure facts 
and such matter as will be of interest to his readers, he is 
just at this time in doubts about perfecting his plans to 
have Sitting Bull sit for his photograph. Never up to this 
time has he been situated so that one could be taken. It is 
expected that he will come down from Fort Buford on the 
steamer " General Sherman," en route to the Standing Rock 
Agency, where he and most of his tribes will remain for a 
time. I have arranged with a photographer, at quite a large 
expense, to go down on the steamer and secure the first 
photo that has ever been taken of our surrendered red 

A river pilot just down from Fort Buford states that the 
old chief is quite reticent and sullen. He recognized him, 
however, saying he always had a good and warm heart for 
river men, and finally wanted a dollar in the way of heap- 
good-friendship. Soon after this interview, a party of citi- 
zens, ladies and gentlemen, called upon the sullen chief at 
his camp, and he refused to come out for the purpose of 
making an exhibition of himself, and after exhausting their 


patience and persuasion and a-heap-o'-good-honey-tongued- 
coaxing, as the cunning warrior would phrase it, they offered 
him one dollar apiece if he would come out and talk a few 
moments, but he stubbornly and very sullenly refused. 

Should he continue to be stubborn after arriving at Stand- 
ing Bock, we of course will fail to get his photo, but we 
intend to have it, that is if it can be had by any reasonable 
amount of moral persuasion, as he would say himself, " this 
side of the happy hunting grounds." We have known war- 
chiefs to act stubbornly for many months after they had 
surrendered, and for no other reason only it was, to use 
their own phrase, " bad medicine, heap bad ; no good." 
They would often say it was " the Great Spirit going to 
strike them," and there is no doubt as to their entertaining 
such superstition in real earnestness. 

The writer at one time knew of a photographer who went 
quietly to the camp of a once leading war chief, who had 
already surrendered, and covering himself and his apparatus 
with a blanket, set himself to work trying to get his camera 
in range, when all at once he heard a clicking outside, that, 
to say the least, sounded not at all agreeable, and at once 
uncovering, found himself modestly arrayed within short 
range of the stalwart chief, with a Spencer carbine in hand, 
cocked and ready for instant action. The cool-headed and 
persuasive photographer succeeded in becoming master of 
the situation, by gently persuading the war chief that he 
meant nothing wrong, and had already taken a score or more 
of the leading war chiefs, all of whom were well pleased, also, 
that all of the big officers in the army had their pictures 
taken, so their wives and children and the great father 
at Washington, could see them. Upon this statement the 
old chief walked down to the rooms of the photographer, 
and sat for his photo, with all his head-gear, galligaskins 
And other toggery that helped to make up his regalia, in 
order that his shapely figure might take a position alongside 
of that of a major-general, saying he wanted the white folks 
to hang his pictures on the wall in their houses, and that 
he would take two to Washington, one for the great father, 
and one for the big white chief ; not the big soldier chiefs, 


meaning Generals Sherman and Sheridan, but the red man's 
friends, President Hayes and Secretary Shurtz. 

The question of securing photos of warriors just after 
they have surrendered may be quite well explained in the 
Indian's own language : " May-be-so-a-heap-bad-medicine. 
May-be-so-white-man' s-heart - a - heap - bad. Great - Spirit- 
strike-red-man-too-quick." As the Indians are at times 
allowed to go about officers' quarters at the military posts, 
and visit among their families more or less, this prejudice 
and superstition has gradually worn away, so that in most 
cases the photographer in time has but little trouble in 
securing their photos, even from those most stubborn at 

If we secure this photo, the readers of this book will 
have the honor and pleasure, if such it is, of seeing the first 
and only one that has ever been taken. We will not cease 
our efforts in trying to procure it, and, if necessary, will 
wait several days before passing this MSS. into the hands 
of the publisher. 

Of our military officers that have seen Sitting Bull and 
conversed with him, all agree in saying that he is an artful 
and brave warrior, and an Indian of very superior ability, 
and possesses unusual powers of endurance. His indomit- 
able energy and bull-dog tenacity has drawn toward him 
the utmost respect of all his subordinate chiefs and warriors, 
and it is not probable a surrender would have been effected 
for some time to come, had it not been for the nearly naked 
and half-starved condition of his old men, women and 

The steamer " General Sherman " has just landed with 
Sitting Bull and about one hundred and fifty old men, 
women and children, including about thirty warriors. His 
father, and White Bear, a handsome-looking and good- 
natured chief, accompany him as close attendants, appar- 
ently as staff officers. The writer, by special permission, 
boarded the steamer, and upon entering the cabin found 
" standing room only," men, women and children of all ages, 
sizes and nationalities, had gathered from the rural districts 
and adjacent towns in the surrounding country, composed 


the audience, all of whom were anxiously waiting their turn 
to " shake and how " with the famous old war-horse. The 
writer considered his mission and interview with the chief 
too important to " get left," and at once mounted a chair in 
the front end of the cabin, and looking over the surging 
crowd, at last caught a glimpse of a row of six Indians, all 
sitting at the left side of the cabin, with scout Allison stand- 
ing beside Sitting Bull. I succeeded in getting through the 
crowd and reaching the point where Allison stood, who at 
once gave me a formal introduction to "Chief Sitting Bull," 
who sat in a chair at the head of the row. Mr. Allison,, 
knowing that I was concluding my last chapter of this book, 
was, in his always courteous manner, very obliging to me,, 
and took special pains to tell the chief that I was the 
"white chief of a book," and an old Indian trader. The 
chief looked up rather smilingly, and at the same time ex- 
tending his right hand and drawing his blanket, that covered 
a once white shirt, more closely around his broad shoulders 
with the other, said, " How." I at once returned the " how," 
and then made some signs known in the Southern Indian 
language as "friendship," which he seemed to recognize 
at once and rather good-naturedly. Preparatory to going 
on the steamer, and bent upon getting his photograph, if 
possibly within the reach of human ingenuity, I put in my 
pocket a photo of my own (like the one on this frontispiece), 
with the view of giving it to him, provided, however, I found 
him in the right kind of humor, knowing very well the preju- 
dices that had been inculcated from the aboriginal pre- 
instruction of many of his race. 

Upon giving him the photo, " White Bear," who sat at the= 
foot of the semi- circle row, looked up in a wishful and pleas- 
ing manner, and extending his hand to shake said, " How, 
how," evidently much pleased to meet a pale-faced stranger 
who could talk the language of the red man by signs. 

After extending the usual " shake and how " with him, I 
turned to Sitting Bull's father, whose Indian name is " Four 
Horns," who was very reticent, although quite good-natured. 
He is an Indian quite under medium stature, with shoulders 
somewhat bent to the front, and, to try a guess on his age, 


would say quite close to seventy. He seemed to accept Lis 
situation quite willingly, at the same time showed a rather 
tiresome air, which led me to believe that he was actually 
tired of being on the war-path, and only too glad to be at 
peace, and no doubt thinks it better for him, as well as 
others of his age, to be settled upon reservations, where 
they can freely partake of government rations and draw 
their annuity goods semi-annually, even if " the bad young 
braves " do go out in raiding parties occasionally. As to 
the latter, ho probably cares but very little, and will never 
give himself any uneasiness, even if all the young braves on 
the Missouri River should turn loose upon the frontier; but 
as far as he is personally concerned, there is no question 
t>ut that he intends to live quietly upon a reservation and 
Abide by such rules and laws as will be made to govern it. 

In turning to Sitting Bull, I asked Allison if he, " Bull," 
would take good care of my photograph, whose reply was, 
"Yes, he is glad to get it and will take good care of it." 
This was encouraging to the writer, thinking it might stim- 
ulate him to have his own taken to give in return, as is char- 
acteristic with leading chiefs to make a return present, and 
more so when his heart is good toward the donor. We bade 
him good-by, and after the regular " shake and how," left 
the steamer in order to make room for others who were 
anxious to shake with the chief, and we must say he would 
shake hands very cordially with all who came along, paying 
especial attention to the ladies. He has, it is said, hereto- 
fore and since his surrender been quite indisposed to talk, 
and rather sullen, saying he did not want to be talked to 
death and gloated at. He wore a pair of green wire goggles, 
so we could not see his naked eyes, but it is said that he 
has a pair of as keen eagle eyes as ever was set between two 
high cheek bones on any red man in the aboriginal tribes. 
Up to this time we have hopes of getting him to sit for his 
photo. We now witness the Professor going on board the 
steamer with his camera and other paraphernalia, getting 
ready to make the first attempt, after arriving at Standing 
Rock, that was ever made to secure the photograph of Sit- 
ting Bull, but still entertaining some doubts as to his success, 


— that is to say, until after lie becomes more settled and re- 
conciled to his new home. The chief will feel quite differ- 
ent after arriving at the agency and getting rested, as well 
as getting out of the way of the hundreds of anxious look- 
ers on, and besides, he will meet his old and trusted friends, 
" Gaul and Crow King," and other warriors and the fami- 
lies he has so often inquired after since he surrendered. 

We expect to have to wait from three to seven days be- 
fore he will consent to sit, and if we fail in that time, we will 
be compelled to hand our manuscript to the publisher with- 
out it, but not without promising to have it ready for our 
second edition. Just at this moment it is discovered that 
Sitting Bull has consented to come to the hotel, and take 
dinner by special invitation of Mr. Marsh, the popular land- 
lord of the Merchants' Hotel. The chief, upon nearing the 
office desk, takes out a little old worn pencil and registers 
his name in full, with hand somewhat trembling, a fac-simile 
of which was secured by the writer, by means of a piece of 
tracing-paper, and we will promise that it shall appear un- 
der his photo, if we succeed in getting it. In writing Sitting 
Bull has received some instructions at various times from 
Mr. Allison, a worthy and trusted scout who has been in 
government employ a number of years, and having the con- 
fidence of the officers in this department. He is a man of 
fine education, having been raised and schooled in Central 
New York, near Utica, and later years has been in govern- 
ment employ as scout, and interpreter of the Sioux language. 

In regard to the exact age of Sitting Bull we are unable to 
be positive, and we doubt if any one will be able to get his 
right number of years, and the best we have been able to 
learn in regard to it is as follows : 

In the year 1875 the writer was informed, by an ex-Indian 
agent, that he was then forty -five years old, which would 
make him now fifty-one. Just after the Custer battle on the 
Little Big Horn, it was reported that he was then forty-two, 
which would make him now forty- seven. We are now in- 
formed that he is fifty-two, and we are inclined to believe 
the latter to be nearer correct, judging from his looks. That 
he has suffered hardships and privations we all know, and 


he has evidently taken remarkably good care of himself, as 
he shows a fine and healthy-looking countenance. 

His own statement to Mrs. Captain Harmon seems to make 
him 48 — that is as near as he and his father can guess and 

Mrs. Harmon, while interviewing him on the steamer 
"General Sherman," asked him his age, and his reply was he 
thought he was 47. Mrs. Harmon, it appears, had some 
knowledge that led her to believe that he was older, and 
said, " Don't you think you are 48," and his reply was that 
he didn't know exactly, but he knew that he was a little 
older than " Eoaring Thunder," and just at this time " Four 
Horns," father of the Chief, said, " Eoaring Thunder is 46 
and you are a little older — may-be-so-makes-you-48." Thia 
is probably the clearest and most reliable statement that 
has ever been obtained from Sitting Bull by any white per- 
son in regard to his age, and there can be no doubt as to his 
sincerity in all he stated to Mrs. Harmon, as he appeared 
very much interested, and at times made friendly gestures 
that evinced great earnestness and friendship. 

It is almost impossible to get the exact age of any Indian, 
that has been roaming with the hostile bands, as they be- 
come more or less confused, and ofttimes entirely lost in 
keeping the count, which is usually done as follows : 

When a child is born, the mother takes a stick of no great 
size and cuts a notch on one side of it, and from that time 
thereafter it is the intention to cat a notch at the end of 
every moon (a moon is a month), and knowing that twelve 
months make a year, and when twelve notches are cut in this 
stick they then select a tree or another stick, and cut a notch 
in it which denotes one year. We can now readily see that 
if they get confused in making the notches, they are, of 
course, more than likely to lose the exact age, and then they 
have to depend upon the memory of the older ones in the 
family or lodges to help them guess and remember. 

Only four days after the interview with Mrs. Harmon, 
when interviewed by an officer at " Standing Rock," he gave 
his age 44, and said he was born near old Fort George, on 
Willow Creek, below the mouth of Cheyenne River. Next 


to himself, lie considers " Four Horns," who is his father, 
the greatest living chief. Many years ago his father was 
known as the famous chief, " Jumping Bull." He says he 
never committed any depredations in the white man's coun- 
try, and that he did not surrender, but only came in to stay 
a few days, and how wants the government to let him go ; 
that he never made a treaty nor sold any land, nor made 
war on the white man's government. He says he has been 
on the war-path since he was fourteen years old ; and pre- 
vious to that time, and since he was old enough, he killed 
buffalo most of the time, giving all of his surplus meat to 
the old men and women that were poor and too old to hunt. 
It is generally admitted that he is very tender-hearted and 
affectionate toward the old men, women and children of all 
the tribes in the Sioux nation, and the real reason, together 
with his bravery and artfulness, of his gaining such a 
stronghold in the hearts of his people, has been on account 
of his extreme generosity and kind feelings toward them 
when in distress. He has always showed a disposition to 
share equally with them the hardships and sufferings they 
have had to endure ; and it is a noted fact that the great 
majority of the Indians throughout the Sioux country have 
a warm corner in their hearts for Sitting Bull. 

He says he is a chief by inheritance, has two living wives 
and nine children, two of whom are twins. It is not only a 
noticeable but a very amusing fact that he makes various 
reports and conflicting statements to the different interview- 
ers ; having watched his reports with great care from time 
to time since his surrender, and are unable to discover any 
two alike as regards to the same question when being asked 
by different parties ; but as he now gets pay for his " words 
and big talk," perhaps he thinks he should give to each in- 
terviewer a different statement. The writer intends to see 
him before many weeks, and have a hearty laugh over his 
various and speculative interviews. We are inclined to 
think, however, the old chief will only laugh and say, " the 
white folks are all the time a-trying to fool him and his peo- 
ple, and I thought it just as well to have a little fun by my- 
self and see how they would like it to be fooled." That is 





about as much as he or any other Indian cares about mak- 
ing a false statement to white people. Another statement 
made in regard to his family was that he had two good wives, 
loved one as much as the other, and by them both had 
seventeen children, seven of whom were by his last or sec- 
ond wife, and six of them, the youngest, were three pair of 

He seems very much attached to one of his daughters, who 
ran away from him last winter, eloping with a young brave 
who had become tired of taking his rations of buffalo meat 
on the open prarie in the deep snow, and wisely concluded 
to come in and partake of Uncle Sam's hospitality at an 
agency provided especially for him and his people. 

It is said that he mourned very much over the elopement, 
and at times would writhe in anger, claiming that she and 
" Pretty Plume," his wife, were the two handsomest squaws 
among the Sioux ; and in fact we may truthfully say that 
" Pretty Plume " is really a handsome and queenly-looking 
squaw, and if she were a white woman, and favored with the 
usual facilities for an education and moral training, eta, etc., 
she would be a reigning belle in society. The chief claims 
that white people induced his daughter to elope, and before 
he had surrendered, some scalawag had led him to believe 
(at least he so pretended) that our officers at " Fort Yates " 
had her confined in irons, and in one of his statements regard- 
ing his surrender, he said he did not want to come in to sur- 
render, but came to see his girl who was in irons at " Stand- 
ing Rock Agency," and now wants the government to let 
him go back ; but as we have said before, he makes a great 
many statements, and as a general thing no two are alike. 

All there is about it, nothing but starvation and naked- 
ness among his people ever forced him and his remnant band 
of followers to come in and surrender. He made up his 
mind to take the step he did, not because he wanted to, but 
because he and his people were starved out. There was no 
game, no, nothing, absolutely nothing, for them to live on. 

He had wandered around and over a desolate country,, 
where thousands of buffalo and antelope once roamed, and 
now not a track to be seen. Eighteen or twenty years he 


has waged unceasing warfare against the whites, and it is 

admitted, not only by his own people, but by our military 

authorities, and Western men generally, who have had 

means of knowing the facts, that he is the boldest, most 

malignant and artful of all the cunning war chiefs, from the 

Eio Grande to the Northern boundary line. But the chief 

has surrendered, thus relinquishing all his rights to the 

sturdy pioneer and ranchmen of the Western plains. 

In order that you may form an idea of an Indian chant, 

poetry and the " prayer of a squaw," we furnish the exact 

words, as translated by an interpreter soon after the final 

surrender of the chief : 

Be brave, my friends, be brave. 
The white men have brought us food ; 
They will not hurt us ; 
Their hearts are full of pity for us, 
My father and my mother, be not afraid, 
Your hunger once more is stayed, 
And there is still food in abundance. 
My brother and my sister, comb your hair, 
And paint your faces with vermilion, 
For the Great Spirit has softened 
The hearts of our enemies, and they feed us with food. 

He has, within the writer's knowledge, given three dis- 
tinct accounts, and no two of them alike, of Custer's last 
battle against him in the valley of the Little Big Horn,, 
and there can be no doubt as to his first report being in 
the main correct. It was about as follows : 

He heard the long-haired chief and his soldiers were 
coming, and he sent out thirty young men on the day before 
the battle, and that night twenty of them returned and re- 
ported the white soldiers coming, and he then told his 
braves and all his old and young men to get ready for battle* 
On the morning of the battle seven more of the young men 
came in and said the soldiers were closing in upon their vil- 
lage, and not long afterwards the remaining three came in 
and reported the whole column of cavalry in sight, and he 
then sent the women and children away, and before they 
had been gone long the white soldiers made their first 
charge, and just at this time his wife came running back, 


•saying she was so badly scared that she forgot her baby. He 
at once brought the little one from his tepee, and giving it 
to his wife and telling her to run, he then turned toward his 
braves, who were just resisting a bold and gallant charge 
made by Custer at the head of his men. He then raised a 
pole with a flag, and at the top of his voice shouted, " I am 
Sitting Bull, the big chief and leader of all the Sioux war- 
riors." His men had but little trouble in driving our col- 
umn back, and every charge that was made by our men after 
that was met and checked by his braves, and those not 
killed on the field were driven back into new positions ; and 
when the cavalry was finally reduced in numbers to a hand- 
ful of men, they all rallied to where Custer stood, and then 
the fighting was soon over, they all falling nearly at the 
same time. 

He then gave orders to go over to the other band, mean- 
ing " Major Reno's command," leaving the squaws on the 
field, which was near their village. 

It is supposed by those who came upon the field first 
after the battle, that just at this period some one of the 
chiefs gave orders not to mutilate Custer's body, and also 
made a mark across his nose and cheeks for a notice to the 
squaws to that effect, which was obeyed ; hence we find 
Custer's body not mutilated. 

The chief further stated in this report that Reno and his 
whole command would have shared the fate of Custer had 
it not been for the arrival of "Terry and Gibbon" with re- 

Another report he gives about as follows : saying he sent 
his wife and child out back to hide and then started to go 
over where they were fighting, and just then a heavy shock 
of thunder and many sharp streaks of lightning struck the 
whole of Custer's command, and that was what killed so 
many men, and when the thunder was over, his warriors 
killed all there was left. 

Another statement is, that after his braves had killed 
nearly all of Custer's men, he told them to cease firing, as 
they had killed men enough, but they still insisted upon 
wiping out the whole command, and then Custer's men 


made such fearful charges they had to kill them all in order 
to save their own lives and their women and children. Now, 
it is more than probable that his first report is the nearest 
correct, as it compares very favorably with the two made by 
" Crow King and Low Dog," at Standing Bock, only a few 
days after the surrender of the chief. It is doubtful if we 
^ver arrive at the actual facts in relation to that battle any 
nearer than is embraced in those three reports, which in- 
cludes the first one made by the chief, and those two by 
Crow King and Low Dog respectively, who were leading 
war chiefs in the fight. 

We have never, up to this time, heard of thunder and 
lightning making an attack on a battalion of cavalry, nor are 
we willing to believe that Sitting Bull ordered his warriors 
to cease firing, at the same time telling them they had killed 
men enough, and that the soldiers were not to blame, as 
they were told to do so and were fighting under orders from 
their government, etc., etc. 

Such action on his part is not one of his characteristics, 
nor is it consistent with his mode of warfare against either 
white men nor his red brethren, for only a month or six 
weeks before his surrender he annihilated a small band of 
.Nez Perces, some seventeen in number. This, however, has 
recently come to light. In 1877, when the Nez Perces sur- 
rendered to General Miles, a small band escaped and fled to 
Sitting Bull's band across the boundary line, and it appears 
of late they drifted away from the Sioux warriors. "We are 
at the present time unable to get the exact facts in regard 
to the trouble, but, as far as we can learn, a sudden quarrel 
broke out in the lodges and the Nez Perces were killed to a 

Sitting Bull's report that he " ceased firing " is only a lame 
Indian plea in the shape of begging for mercy, thinking our 
authorities will be more lenient with him should he be for- 
tunate enough in making them believe that he really did 
save the lives of some of the survivors of Custer's last battle. 
He has mustered his ingenuity in this plea, thinking it will 
be the means of drawing an additional amount of mercy to 
that already shown him. We will soon show how it was 


that he happened to be so humane and thoughtful as to give 
his much talked-about order, and just at this particular 
time, to " cease firing." 

It was the day after Custer fell that our men came on the 
hill and at once discovered that Custer's body was not muti- 
lated, and a mark had been made across his cheeks and nose, 
just below his eyes. This was done by some one of the 
leading chiefs as a notice to the squaws that this body must 
not be mutilated on account of his bravery ; and well they 
knew and felt it, for over one hundred empty cartridge 
shells were found near by where his feet had stood just be- 
fore he fell, and there can be no doubt but that he brought 
down many a warrior before he fell. It so happened that 
Major Reno found that he was overpowered, and being fore- 
sighted enough to entrench himself, was thus enabled to 
hold at bay the unrelenting hordes until Generals Terry and 
Gibbon came to his relief, and just about this time the chief 
no doubt did give an order to retreat and also to cease firing. 
At all events he retreated to the hills in a very short space of 
time, which was, of course, done to save his own men instead 
of Reno's, who were entrenched, and were alone giving him 
a hot battle. 

As before stated, the writer has taken no little pains in 
procuring facts from the most reliable sources at his com- 
mand, and at the same time has been very cautious in arriv- 
ing at conclusions, in order to get at actual facts and cir- 
cumstances as they have transpired during this important 
campaign, and must say that not until the present time have 
we been able to get an Indian account of the Custer battle 
from their own lips any way satisfactory, or that looked half 
way reasonable. 

We have quite recently noticed an account given by two 
leading chiefs, " Crow King and Low Dog," both subordi- 
nates under Sitting Bull, and were in the " Custer battle." 
It appears that Captain Howe, at Fort Yates, or more gen- 
erally known as the " Standing Rock Agency," succeeded in 
getting a voluntary statement from these two chiefs, and it 
is the clearest and most satisfactory account that is known, 
to have been given by Indians who knew the facts. We 


have known Captain Howe since 1873, and know him to be 
a most upright and conscientious officer and gentleman, and 
would not allow himself to stoop to anything that had a 
shadow of trickery or falsehood about it. He is highly 
respected by the Indians, and more particularly on account 
of his being at all times strict, yet just, and very obliging. 

The readers can now have the latest and most authentic In- 
dian account that ever has been procured by a white person. 

Captain Howe has, during the eight years just past, been 
in command of several military posts on the Missouri River, 
and has the reputation of managing Indians with great 
credit to himself, and general satisfaction to them. It will 
be remembered that " Crow King and Low Dog " surrender- 
ed last winter, after being driven and forced by the frost- 
bitten troops under " Major Hges," near Fort Buford, and 
have since had opportunities to get acquainted with the 
officers, and have, without doubt, made a very correct 
account of " Custer's last battle." 

Low Dog said : " We were in camp near Little Big Horn 
Eiver. We had lost some horses and an Indian went back 
on the trail to look for them. We did not know that the 
white warriors were coming after us. Some scouts or men 
in advance of the warriors saw the Indian looking for the 
horses, and ran after him and tried to kill him, to keep him 
from bringing us word ; but he ran faster than they, and 
came into camp and told us that the white warriors were 
coming. I was asleep in my lodge at the time. The sun 
was about noon (pointing with his finger). I heard the 
alarm, but I did not believe it. I thought it was a false 
alarm. I did not think it possible that any white men would 
attack us, so strong as we were. We had in our camp the 
Cheyennes, Arrapahoes, and seven different tribes of the 
Teton Sioux — a countless number. Although 1 did not be- 
lieve it was a true alarm, I lost no time getting ready. When 
I got my gun and came out of my lodge, the attack had be- 
gun at the part of the camp where Sitting Bull and the Un- 
capapas were. The Indians held their ground to give the 
women and children time to get out of the way. By this 
time the herders were driving in the horses, and as I was 


nearly at the further end of the camp I ordered my men to 
catch their horses and mount. But there was much confu- 
sion. The women and children were trying to catch their 
horses and get out of the way, and my men were hurrying 
to go and help those that were fighting. When the fighters 
saw that the women and children were safe, they fell back 
By this time my people went to help them, and the less able 
warriors and the women caught horses and got them ready, 
and we drove the first attacking party back, and that party 
retreated to a high hill. Then I told my people not to ven- 
ture too far in pursuit, for fear of falling into an ambush. 

By this time all the warriors in our camp were mounted 
and ready for fight, and then we were attacked on the other 
side by another party. They came on us like a thunderbolt. 
I never before nor since saw men so brave and fearless as 
those white warriors. We retreated until our men got all 
together, and then we charged upon them. I called to my 
men, 'This is a good day to die; follow me.' We massed 
our men, and, that no man should fall back, every man 
whipped another man's horse, and we rushed right upon 
them. As we rushed upon them the white warriors dis- 
mounted to fire, but they did very poor shooting. They held 
their horses' reins on one arm while they were shooting, but 
their horses were so frightened that they pulled the men all 
around, and a great many of their shots went up in the air 
and did us no harm. The white warriors stood their ground 
bravely, and none of them made any attempt to escape or 
get away. After all, but a few of them were killed ; I cap- 
tured two of their horses. Then the wise men and chiefs of 
our nation gave out to our people not to mutilate the dead 
white chief, for he was a brave warrior and died a brave 
man, and his remains should be respected. Then I turned 
round and went to help fight the other white warriors, who 
had retreated to a high hill on the east side of the river. 
(This was Bono's command.) I don't know whether any 
white men of Custer's force were taken prisoners. When I 
got back to our camp they were all dead. Everything was 
in confusion all the time of the fight. I did not see General 
Custer. I do not know who killed him. We did not know 





THE H0STILE8. 101 

till the fight was over that he was the white chief. We had 
no idea that the white warriors were coming until the run- 
ner came in and told us. I do not say that Reno was a cow- 
ard. He fought well, but our men were fighting to save 
their women and children, and drove them back. No white 
man or Indian ever fought as bravely as Custer and his men. 
The next day we fought Eeno and his forces again, and 
killed many of them. Then the chiefs said these men had 
been punished enough, and that we ought to be merciful, 
and we let them go. Then we heard that another force was 
coming up the river to fight us (Gen. Terry's command), and 
we started to fight them, but the chiefs and wise men coun- 
seled that we had fought enough, and that we should not 
fight unless attacked, and we went back and took our women 
and children and went away." 

Having heard Low Dog's story of the fight, I concluded I 
would try to get an account from other chiefs, and going 
with an interpreter to the Indian camp, approached Chief 
Gaul first. He said if he knew anything he would tell it, 
but he denied that he was in the fight. He said he was 
helping the women catch the horses, and took no other part. 
If he thought I believed that, he mistook his man, and I 
shall try him again. Eain-in-the-Face refused to talk. I 
then called on Crow King, a chief of the Uncapapas, Sitting 
Bull's tribe, and a noted warrior. He has a good face, and 
wields great influence over the Indians. He is one of the 
few chiefs who speak well of Sitting Bull. After some little 
talk, he came up to the fort and gave me his story : 

" We were in camp, not thinking there was any danger of 
a battle, although we had heard that the long-haired chief 
had been sent after us. Some of our runners went back on 
our trail, for what purpose I do not know. One came back 
and reported that an army of white soldiers was coming, and 
he had no more than reported when another runner came in 
with the same story, and also told us that the command had 
divided, and that one party was going round to attack us on 
the opposite side. The first attack was at the camp of the 
Uncapapas tribe. The shots neither raised nor fell. (Here 
he indicated that the whites commenced firing at about 400 


yards distance.) The Indians retreated — at first slowly, to 
give the women and children time to go to a place of safety 
Other Indians got our horses. By that time we had war- 
riors enough to turn upon the whites, and we drove them to 
a hill and started back to camp. Then the second band of 
white warriors came. We did not know who was their 
chief, but we supposed it was Custer's command. This 
party commenced firing at long range (indicating nearly a 
mile). We had then all our warriors and horses. There 
were 80 warriors in mv band. All the Sioux were there 
from every tribe. We had warriors plenty as the leaves on 
the trees. 

" Our camp was as long as from the fort to the lower end of 
our camp here (more than two and a half miles). Sitting 
Bull and Crazy Horse were the great chiefs of the fight. 
Sitting Bull did not himself fight, but he gave orders. We 
turned against this second party. The great body of our 
warriors came together in their front, and we rushed our 
horses on them. At the same time warriors rode out on 
each side of them and circled round them till they were sur- 
rounded. When they saw that they were surrounded they 
dismounted. They tried to hold on to their horses, but as 
we pressed closer they let go their horses. We crowded 
them towards our main camp and killed all. They kept in 
order and fought like brave warriors as long as they had a 
man left. Our camp was on Greasy Grass Biver (Little 
Big Horn). When we charged, every chief gave the cry, 
1 Hi-yi-yi.' (Here Crow Chief gave us the cry in a high 
prolonged tone. When this cry is given it is a command to 
all the warriors to watch the chief and follow his actions.) 
Then every chief rushed his horse on the white soldiers, and 
all our warriors did the same, every one whipping another's 
horse. There was great hurry and confusion in the fight. 
No one chief was above another in that fight. It was 
not more than half an hour after the long-haired chief 
attacked us before he and all his men were dead. Then we 
went back for the first party. We fired at them until the 
sun went down. We surrounded them and watched them 
all night, and at daylight we fought them again. We killed 


many of them. Then a chief from the Uncapapas called our 
men off. He told them those men had been punished 
enough, that they were fighting under orders, that we had 
killed the great leader and his men in the fight the day 
before, and we should let the rest go home. Sitting Bull 
gave this order. He said : * This is not my doings nor these 
men's. They are fighting because they were commanded to 
fight. We have killed their leader, let them go.' I call on 
the Great Spirit to witness what I say. We did not want to 
fight. Long Hair sent us word that he was coming to fight 
us, and we had to defend ourselves and our wives and chil- 
dren. If this command had not been given we could have 
cut Reno's command to pieces, as we did Custer's. No 
warrior knew Custer in the fight. We did not know him, 
dead or alive. When the fight was over the chiefs gave or- 
ders- to look for the long-haired chief among the dead, but 
no chief with long hair could be found.'' (Custer had his 
hair cut short before starting on this march.) 

Crow King said that if Reno had held out until Terry and 
Gibbon came and then fought as Custer did, they would 
have whipped the Indians. The Indians would then have 
T>een compelled to divide to protect their women and chil- 
dren, and the whites would have had the advantage. He 
expressed great admiration for the bravery of Custer and 
his men, and said that that fight impressed the Indians that 
the whites were their superiors, and it would be their de- 
struction to keep on fighting them. Both he and Low Dog 
said they did not feel that they would be blamed for the 
Custer fight or its results. It was war ; they were attacked ; 
Custer tried to kill them ; they killed him. Crow King said 
he had two brothers killed in the fight ; from 30 to 50 Indi- 
ans were killed, and a much larger number who were 
wounded died afterward. 




Upon the opposite page appears a life likeness of " Louis,'* 
a son of Chief Sitting Bull, about twenty-three years of age, 
and through the kindness of young C. K. Peck, Jr., whose 
father was an old Indian trader, we are permitted to take a 
"fac simile " of his signature, which was secured from Louis 
while he was en route from Fort Buford to Standing Rock, 
early last spring, on the steamer "General Terry." He also 
wrote his wife's name, Zuzela, as will also be noticed. 

After Louis was surrendered to Major Ilges last winter, 
he rendered almost invaluable service to that officer in" the 
way of giving information and acting as a mounted scout, 
and it is possible he may remain quiet and continue his 
good services to the government ; and it is just as possible 
he may skip out with a marauding band of discontented 
braves and join a small war-party. He will, however, be 
influenced in a great measure by the leading chiefs, also by 
Sitting Bull himself. 

The writer places these autographs before the reading 
public merely to show that the average class of Indians of 
both sexes, below fhe age of say twenty-five, are, in a great 
measure to be considered yet in the hands of the military, 
the philanthropists and teachers. 

It will readily be seen that the untutored children of 
the forest will no doubt make very marked progress in 
our elementary branches of study, with proper encour- 
agement and good moral training. The younger class, 
say below the age above mentioned, are generally quite 
ingenious and apt in learning, and those that have not been 
wholly demoralized by the older warriors and leading chiefs, 
there are strong hopes of fair to good results in trying to 
educate them. We are frank to state that, from our own 
personal knowledge, we are able to say that there is a very 
general and marked improvement, which already shows the 

gX ^-3 

l ° T-E/. A 


results of the so very persistent, but generous philanthrop- 
ists and teachers, who have so bravely stemmed the tide of 
opposition all along the frontier. As is already shown at 
the various Indian agencies, there are numerous classes of 
half and full grown Indians of both sexes, who are quite 
well advanced in reading and writing, and as they grow 
older they seem to take quite an interest in farming and 
stock raising, and we must say with considerable less reluc- 
tance than many of our white brothers, after taking the- 
advice of the veteran Horace Greeley to " go West, young^ 
man, go West." 

While writing this article, we beg to state that in turning 
our eyes to the left, and looking out of a certain window in 
Printing House Square, we gaze upon the scene of the life 
labors of Horace Greeley, (the Tribune building), the moral 
adviser to the young men of the country, as well as the old, 
and just now imagine if his voice could be heard from be- 
neath the sepulchre, he would speak in louder tones than 
ever, " Young man, go West," but don't forget what to do when 
you get there. 

As to the philanthropists and teachers who have paved 
the way into the Indian country, and have made such com- 
mendable strides toward educating the red men of the plains, 
we can only say that they are, to say the least, entitled to a- 
vote of thanks from the country at large, and should be not 
only encouraged by the Government, but well paid for their 
services. There is no longer any doubt as to the final suc- 
cess of their workings and teaching, both morally and 



.Sitting BuWs frst visit to a white man } s city — Bismarck. — On 

the steamer " General Sherman" 

Sitting Bull's visit to Bismarck was anything but satisfac- 
tory to him, more particularly on account of being deprived 
of visiting the residence of Captain William Harmon. It 
will be remembered that this was the first white man's town 
or city that Sitting Bull was ever in, and he certainly was 
entitled to respectful treatment. It appears that Mrs. Har- 
mon's mother, Mrs. Galpin, was an old acquaintance of his, 
many years ago, and he has known for years that her daugh- 
ter married Captain Harmon. 

As soon as the steamer landed, Captain Harmon started 
in his carriage, taking Mrs. H. along as far as the church, 
and then proceeded, with one of his little sons, to the boat. 
The chief was more than glad to see him, and after the usual 
" hearty shake, and how," the captain then said, " This is my 
second son ;" to which the chief replied, " I am poor, and 
have nothing to give you, only my name," taking the hat 
from the boy's head and writing his name quite plainly on 
the inside, and said, " if I had anything more to give, I 
would give it to you ;" and then said to the captain, " you 
ought to bring your wife down to the boat," saying he had 
known her mother for many years. The captain said he had 
left her at church, but as he was going straightway home, 
he would take her along; and when he, the chief, came up 
into the city, he wanted him to come to his residence ; to 
which the chief replied, that he would be glad to come, and 
would do so, if they would let him. But it appears his wish 
was not granted, for reasons known only to those who had 
him in charge, and prevented him from going there. 

Captain Harmon, upon arriving at his house — a richly fur- 
nished mansion in the suburbs of the city — together with 
his accomplished and queenly wife, set themselves about 
preparing a lunch, such as sandwiches, lemonade, etc., etc., 


and thereupon waited the arrival of the " chief." The par- 
ties in charge of the reception, however, thought best not to 
allow him to go there, for reasons not by them explained, 
and at the same time not showing even a faint disposition 
to care anything about the personal wishes of " Sitting 

The chief felt very much disappointed, as well as deeply 
mortified at this chagrin, and Mrs. Harmon was at once sent 
for. Upon her arrival on board the steamer " General Sher- 
man," the usual " shake and how," as a matter of course, 
came first, and the chief was indeed glad to see Mrs. H. The 
chief had known her mother since his bovhood, and he 
seemed to act and talk very free — inquiring about many 
things that had transpired within the past few years in that 
section of the country, and expressed himself as perfectly 
satisfied with her answers and explanations. 

The good lady said to him, " Don't you think it would 
have been better for you and your people if you had come 
in and surrendered in 1867, as you were told to do ?" To 
which he answered, " Yes, I think it might have been bet- 
ter, but as me and my people was born in this country, I 
always considered it belonged to me, and do yet ; and I 
never would have come in, only for the sake of my women 
and children, and did not come in because I wanted to." 

Mrs. Harmon speaks the Sioux language fluently, and the 
chief knew that she was one among only a very few white 
ladies in the world that can speak and understand his lan- 
guage in all its phases. In the early days of the chief he 
learned the French language to quite an extent from " French 
traders " that visited his section of the country for the pur- 
pose of trading, and who generally came from the British 

Now the writer does not in the least manner feel disposed 
to question the conduct of any particular parties, but will 
merely suggest, now that Sitting Bull is in the hands 
of the proper officials, fully and properly surrendered 
in accordance with all demands made upon him by the 
proper authorities, he be treated with, to say the least, com- 
mon decency, all of which he is certainly entitled to, for we 


must admit that the war was forced upon him and his peo- 
ple for no other reason only for the advancement of our 
noble Saxon race. 

The idea of forcing him into a common puppet show in 
different places, much to his displeasure, was, to say the 
least, very disgusting to him and wholly uncalled for. No 
wonder he said he thought the white folks were making 
fools of themselves in forcing him into a position to be 
sneered and laughed at. 

It must be borne in mind that Sitting Bull has not lesa 
than twenty-five hundred braves, all of whom are able- 
bodied warriors, and are now within his call, and all the 
while he is submitting so quietly to the powers that be, it 
is well enough to consider that it is not impossible thai 
plans will be laid and carried into effect within his apparent 
deaf ear, which may be the means of calling out the entire 
force under command of General Sheridan ; and we again, 
suggest that the artful old chief be dealt with in a fair and 
respectable manner, and be allowed to receive such treat- 
ment as he is entitled to. 

In the way of a gentle hint as to what might happen, the 
writer respectfully refers to the first section of this volume, 
" General Van Couvnor," where the leading war-chiefs were 
in council at a " peace commission,'' and at the same time 
the young warriors were raiding in Texas, capturing women, 
children, horses and mules, and it is fair to presume that 
similar scenes may be enacted on the frontier plains of 
Dakota and among the ranchmen in the hills of Montana, as 
it was on the borders of Kansas and Texas. 

The writer does not propose to dictate nor even suggest a 
policy to be pursued by our authorities, but modestly claims- 
the right to state what possibly might occur, judging from 
facts and precedents already established on .our frontier ; and 
in the meantime we have no reason to apprehend that there 
will be any napping or negligence while Sitting Bull and his 
warriors are being herded and cared for. 

THE H0STILE8. 109 


A Careful Review of the Present Situation. 

A careful view of the situation, and a glance over the list 
of field officers that have been on duty in the Northwest for 
the purpose of subjugating the Sioux nation and cutting the 
way through the bad lands and over the plains, in order to 
cross the continent on this line — running nearly mid-way be- 
tween the 46th and 47th parallel of north latitude — it will 
at once be seen that no insignificant amount of military 
genius and executive ability has been arrayed in the new 
Northwest to accomplish this final and most satisfactory re- 
sult, that the country may justly feel so proud of. 

Any one of the above-mentioned officers; if called upon to 
take command of an army corps of twenty thousand men, 
would not shrink from the responsibility, but would, judg- 
ing from their past career and from laurels already won in 
many a hard-fought battle — some in civil war and others in 
Indian wars on the frontier — would discharge the various 
and onerous duties devolved upon them in a manner becom- 
ing an officer in the American army. 

We have had on duty in the Northwest a greater portion 
of the time since 1873, between thirty and forty field officers 
and over two hundred officers of the line, with about three 
thousand men in the ranks, to confront the hostiles of the 
Sioux nation. In addition to the above, we must add the 
list of army surgeons, artificers, mechanics, teamsters and 
laborers at the various military posts ; also Indian scouts 
and interpreters; all of which will number not less than 
three hundred, and at times would swell the number to over 
seven hundred. 

We will now call the attention of our readers to the fact 
that the officers of the line in all of the regiments above 
mentioned, and others that have been on duty in the North- 
west during our Indian troubles, have shared no less of the 
hardships and dangers than their superiors mentioned in 
this volume. En regie ; selon les regies, de jure. In speaking 
generally, we must say that their heroic conduct on the 


field and their industry and faithful services entitles them 
to volumes of credit and a general vote of thanks from their 
countrymen, many of whom are sure to follow in the west- 
ern path that is now in a great measure paved for civilization. 

In making special mention of officers, the writer does not 
consider it his proper mission, strictly speaking, to give the 
record of army officers, as this work is not intended for an 
army register, but we think it not out of place to make men- 
tion of some of the material facts connected with the history 
of the officers who have takfcn an active part in this long 
and vexatious Indian war that is now terminated, in order 
to more fully illustrate to our readers that our Indian diffi- 
culties have been managed by officers not only of long and 
varied experience in both civil and Indian warfare, and as 
their records show, they have proved themselves industri- 
ous, zealous and faithful to the various trusts imposed upon 
them, as well as proving themselves equal to the emergen- 
cies that have suddenly arisen before them from time to time 
during the several years just past, and some of whom have 
been constantly engaged against the hostile savages since 
the close of the civil war. 

The successful management of the various campaigns since 
the battle of the " Little Big Horn," in 1876, and the well- 
trained discipline throughout the rank and file of the troops 
in this department, reflects great credit upon the sagacious 
and conscientious Department Commander, Brig.-General 
Alfred H. Terry, and his staff of skilled and gentlemanly 
officers. It must not be inferred that we hold General Terry 
responsible for the result of the Little Big Horn battle. 
Far from it. Certain high officials at Washington, in order 
to give vent to their personal spite, detained the column 
nearly or quite a month, thereby giving Sitting Bull an 
opportunity of enormous magnitude to recruit his forces 
from the various tribes throughout the West and Northwest, 
all of which swelled his hostile army that awaited in the 
valley of the Little Big Horn only to meet the gallant Custer, 
who was known among the Indians all the way from the 
"Brazos to the Yellowstone," as the "Long-Haired Chief," 
thus enabling him to mow down the brave troopers of the 


7th Cavalry, with Custer at the head, by platoons and com- 
panies, as they were found on the field lying in regular 
winrows, sleeping the sleep that none but dauntless soldiers, 

Our countrymen throughout the land ought to speak in 
loud tones and say to the veterans, officers and brave men of 
their respective commands, that have stood the brunt of a 
score or more of hard-fought Indian battles and skirmishes 
on the plains all along the frontier, from tho Gulf of Mexico 
to the British Possessions, and who have with stout hearts 
buried hundreds of their heroic brothers that were mowed 
down, not only man by man, but by companies and battal- 
ions, whose bones now lie mouldering under the sod of the 
green earth, some in the valley of the Washita, and others 
in the lonely valley of the Little Big Horn, with scarce a 
rude head-board that well might read, Here lies a jnan that 
nobly lived and bravely died in honor, glory and fame, that 
his white brothers might follow in the peaceful paths of 
civilization. Yes. Well might the country at large, in one 
loud voice say to those brave officers and men, Well done, 
good and faithful servants, you have opened the way for 
Christian civilization that is sure to follow in your foot- 
steps. Tour tents, camp equipage and other paraphernalia 
used in wars, also the tepees of the savage warrior must now 
make room for the onward march of civilization, with its 
churches, school-houses and teachers. 

Instead of hearing the oft-heard war-whoop and murder- 
ous yells of the hideous savages on the battle-field and the 
retort by our Gatling guns and musketry, and the loud cheer- 
ing of our brave boys in blue, you will hear the persuasive 
eloquence of the kind-hearted theologian and the knightly 
young schoolmaster, pleading the cause of Christianity and 
education ; and where Sitting Bull ofttimes held his medicine 
lodges and war dances on the banks of the Little Missouri 
and Little Big Horn Rivers, for no other purpose only to 
strengthen and bolster up the hearts of hundreds of Gall- 
hearted warriors, and urge them on to cold-blooded, heart- 
rending and blood-thirsty murders, you will see stately 
court-houses, with their benches occupied by the ablest 


jurists in the land to mete out justice, and members of the 
bar ably advocating and defending the cause of peace and 
good order. 

The energetic, sturdy, powerful and unconquerable Saxon 
race have decided that this country cannot afford to set 
aside an area of territory large enough to make three States 
the size of New York for the sustenance of a single chief and 
his hostile bands of warriors. The fate of the " king war- 
rior" is decreed. The final unconditional surrender of Sit- 
ting Bull is an event in American history, and more espe- 
cially so for the reason of it being the summary turning 
point of transformation of the native aborigines of the once 
powerful Sioux nation. Our military will no longer be 
waging costly and bloody wars against his hostile and pow- 
erful hordes to subdue their rebellious and murderous on- 
slaughts .against the onward march of our Saxon civilization 
that manifest destiny has decreed shall dominate on this 

He, with his tribes and marauding bands of demoralized 
and half-starved followers, will be watched with vigilant 
eyes, but kindly cared for by the munificent agents of the 
Interior Department, assisted by a corps of large and open- 
hearted philanthropists, whose duties will not only in a 
measure be encouraged, but rigidly enforced by the author- 
ity of our powerful but ever humane and magnanimous gov- 
ernment. There is no longer a formidable tribe, or an asso- 
ciation of tribes, of hostile Indians within the territory of 
the United States. 

It is fair to presume that Sitting Bull will be kept under 
military surveillance upon some one of the military posts 
for awhile and then put upon an agency. His followers 
will be divided among the various Indian agencies, and the 
old chief will have to resign himself into insignificance and 
rest contented in thinking that he once was the supreme 
and powerful ruler over the once powerful tribes of the 
Sioux nation. 

At the same time it is just as fair to presume that many a 
young and discontented warrior that once raided and fought 
under the plumed Sitting Bull may think agency rations 


-somewhat stale, and the quiet and monotonous life about 
Uncle Sam's agencies quite too common for a young and 
dashing warrior, and after seeing an opportunity to mount 
themselves and secure a belt full of long range ammunition, 
start off on a raid, perhaps to join other bands, for no 
other purpose only to roam from one section of the country 
to another, save to kill a few buffalo and run off small herds 
of stock. Vigilant eyes will have to be kept upon them un- 
til they become more contented and better familiarized with 
the ways of white people. There is, however, a decided im- 
provement in the advancement of the Indian from one year 
to another. The young and yet warlike braves will have to 
be gradually tamed, now that they have surrendered, and it 
will take no little amount of moral persuasion to keep them 
within the bounds of peace and good behavior. We may 
look for the best, and at the same time place confidence in 
the ability of our trustworthy officers who have them in 



The Painting in the Studio. — Walt Whitman's Account. — Me* 
moriam by Judge J. S. Carvett. — Rain-in-the-Face. 

That our readers may be able to appreciate the interest, 
that has been taken over this ever-memorable battle, we 
make note of some facts connected with it, in order to show 
that some of the ablest authors in prose and poetry, also 
artists of great repute, have bent their energies, ability and 
skill in securing the real facts as they were connected with 
" Custer's last battle." 

A description of this battle has been heralded throughout 
the land in nearly or quite all of the journals, and read by 
every fireside, and almost numberless paintings, chromos, 
engravings and various other life-like illustrations adorn 
the walls to-day of almost untold numbers of art galleries, 
drawing rooms, studios, and public places ; but never has 
there been produced a painting, chromo or engraving that 
will compare with the one now nearly finished and owned 
by Mr. John Mulvany, recently from Kansas City, Mo. The 
writer remembers that during the summer of 1880 Mr. 
Mulvany was making his tour throughout the Northwest, 
visiting the Custer battle-field, the different military posts 
and Indian agencies, in order to get views and facts con- 
nected with the battle, such as would enable him to paint 
upon canvas a real life-like picture of the several survivors, 
who, up to this time, were withstanding the desperate 
charges that were repeatedly made by the almost countless 
numbers of blood-thirsty savages. After receiving the de- 
sired information from officers, scouts and Indians who had 
survived the battle, he proceeded to Kansas City, were he 
opened his studio, and remained there perfecting his work. 


until early in this present summer, when he proceeded with 
his painting to Boston, remaining there one month, and 
then proceeded with his painting, nearly finished, to New 
York City, where he now is, completing his work. It is sup- 
posed that he moved his painting from Boston to New York 
City so as to be nearer Mrs. Custer, who resides in the latter 
<aty, in order to enable him to get a more correct knowledge 
of the intellectual features of the General and the officers 
and several others who were known to have been in " the last 

The writer, upon hearing that Mr. Mulvany was in the 
city, at once commenced making inquiries as to his location, 
and, much to his surprise, could get no information. We 
asked, to say the least, several dozen prominent artists and 
newspaper reporters, all of whom would have been likely to 
know, had it not been for the strict secrecy that Mr. Mul- 
vany has been keeping himself in ; but after exhausting all 
of my spare time and patience, and nearly all hope of find- 
ing him or his painting, my mind at once dropped upon a 
certain individual, who I found in the seventh story of a 
certain building, and it was but a few moments before I 
was in his presence, making my usual inquiry in regard to 
the whereabouts of " Mulvany and his painting ;" and, in a 
very gentlemanly manner, after taking the second thought, 
said, " If you can find Mr. Walt Whitman, you will be quite 
likely to get the information you desire, as he is, I think, 
the only man in the city that knows the precise location. 

Soon after this interview I was informed that Mr. Whit- 
man was out of the city, and I at once addressed a note to 
him, and promptly by return mail I received the informa- 
tion that I had so persistently worked to obtain for four 
successive days, and all of this time could not imagine why 
such strict secrecy was resorted to; I was not long, how- 
ever, in finding the building, and, after reaching the top of 
the first flight of stairs, I approached the janitor and in- 
quired if Mr. Mulvany was on the top floor with his paint- 
ing. He replied that he was, but it was no use for me to go 
up there, as I would not be admitted, and besides he had 
received orders not to allow any one to go up there. 


By this time the writer had reached half-way up the sec- 
ond flight in a leisurely manner, and the more we insisted 
upon going up, the more anxious was the janitor to explain, 
why he must not allow any one to enter upon the upper 
floor ; but we slowly gained the top of the flight, and, sud- 
denly turning around the banister, shot up the second flight, 
taking about four steps only, in order to escape from the 
janitor as soon as possible. 

After ascending two more flights we found the door open- 
ing into Mr. Mulvany's studio. He seemed glad to receive 
a representative from the frontier, and more especially so on 
account of my coming from so near the scene exhibited on 
the canvas which hung upon the wall before me, covering a 
space of about 22X12 feet. He at once placed a chair for me 
to sit in at a distance of about thirty feet from the painting, 
and at the first glance my eyes were of course brought 
directly upon the soldierly and most natural-looking figure 
of " Major-General George A. Custer," with his huge revolver 
drawn in his right hand and at arms length, with his eye 
making a sure aim, which at once convinced me that at least 
one more painted and plumed warrior fell before his own time 
had come, which was no doubt then close at hand. On my right 
and just at Custer's left was the genial and noble-hearted 
Cook (Custer's Adjutant), in a half kneeling position, with 
his carbine drawn with deadly aim (and no doubt for the 
last time) on some one of the warriors who were just at this 
time making a fearful onslaught upon this heroic and lonely 
little band, all that were left of the brave three hundred after 
a most bitter and heart-rending, yet the most glorious defense 
that has ever been made in the world, or recorded in the 
annals of any history of civilized or Indian warfare. A few 
feet from Custer, on his left, lay the gallant Captain Yates, 
evidently just breathing his last, and over his body was a 
carbine just leveled by a bronze faced trooper wearing a fron- 
tierman's broad-brimmed hat, set one side of his head and a 
little back, with a blue army shirt on with sleeves rolled up, 
all of which presented a most life-like appearance, and a des- 
peration that seemed to speak as loud and plain as words 
could speak — "Fll avenge the death of my brave cominander f 



who has so nobly fought and bravely died before me." In cast- 
ing my eyes to the rear of where Custer stood, and glancing 
around and over the semi-circle winrow of dead horses and 
men, all lying promiscuously and in pell-mell order, with 
now and then a dead Indian still clenching his carbine or 
spear with deathly grasp, we see nothing but one vast array 
of blood-thirsty warriors, making their final onslaught against 
the legion brave who had stood for hours so bravely and 
fought so nobly, and were now witnessing the life-blood of 
their brothers lave the field, who had already fallen before 
them. Onward the savage hordes are fast rushing, plunging 
their way through the clouds of smoke like so many mad- 
brained demons being driven into bedlam, mounted on their 
fleetest war-Jiorses, trampling over dead horses, dead troop- 
ers and dead Indians, whose copper-colored, naked skin 
(save that portion the breech clout covered) glistened as bril- 
liant as the Chinese vermilion on their scrawny faces, painted 
in such a manner that bore positive evidence of a deter- 
mination to annihilate every white man that by chance 
struck the buffalo trail on the Western plains. 

The savage horde appear to be making this charge on a 
semi-circle line, all mounted and bedecked with gew-gaws, 
and heads dressed in the most costly war-bonnets, and 
tricked with plumes and eagles' feathers, with war-paint on 
their faces, and with carbine and spear in hand, all of which 
presents not only a most horrid, but a murderous and bar- 
barous spectacle, but really a life-like picture of hostile 
savages, arrayed in a bold and unrelenting charge, which 
resulted in a most treacherous and heart-rending massacre. 

As we left the studio our lips v/ere sealed in regard to the 
future course Mr. Mulvany is to pursue, and under a promise 
not to mention his whereabouts, as his painting is yet unfin- 
ished, and he cannot be annoyed with frequent visitors. He 
is arranging a very fine engraving of his painting, the size 
of which will be about 36X20 inches, and nicely framed. I 
saw one of his engravings he had just finished, and must 
frankly say that the intellectual features of all whom I had 
personally known, could not be more clearly and effectually 
set forth for the human eye to gaze upon. The eyes of " Cus- 


ter and Cook " looking as clear and piercing as when they 
were on dress parade at Fort A. Lincoln, only a few months 
before the battle. Mr. Mulvany has certainly gained artistic 
repute to a very high degree, and his efforts must prove an 
immense success. He has been offered twenty-five thousand 
dollars for his painting alone. But we must be brief in this 
account, as it is against the orders of the artist to say any- 
thing special in connection with his studio, but we assume 
the same right that Mr. Whitman presumed to take, and 
will also produce his account of this wonderful work as it 
appeared in the New York Tribune, and following this will 
appear a memoriam by Judge J. S. Carvell, who was an old 
citizen on the frontier at the time, and personally knew the 
many good traits of Custer and the officers of s the Seventh 

The writer places the following productions upon these 
pages to show that intense interest has been taken in 
different parts of the country in regard to this important 
campaign : 



I went to-day to see this just-finished painting by John 
Mulvany, who has been out in far Montana on the spot at 
the forts, and among the frontiersmen, soldiers and Indians, 
for the last two or three years, on purpose to sketch it in 
from reality, or the best that could be got of it. I sat for 
over an hour before the picture, completely absorbed in the 
first view. A vast canvas, I should say twenty or twenty- 
two feet by twelve, all crowded, and yet not crowded, con- 
veying such a vivid play of color, it takes a little time to get 
used to it. There are no tricks ; there is no throwing of 
shades in masses ; it is all at first painfully real, overwhelm- 
ing, needs good nerves to look at it. Forty or fifty figures, 
perhaps more, in full finish and detail, life-size, in the mid- 
ground, with three times that number, or more, through the 
rest — swarms upon swarms of savage Sioux, in their war- 


T>onnets, frantic, mostly on ponies, driving through the back- 
ground, through the smoke, like a hurricane of demons. A 
dozen of the figures are wonderful. Altogether a Western, 
autochthonic phase of America, the frontiers, culminating 
typical, deadly, heroic to the uttermost; nothing in the 
books like it, nothing in Homer, nothing in Shakespeare ; 
more grim and sublime than either, all native, all our own, 
and all a fact. A great lot of muscular, tan-faced men 
brought to bay under terrible circumstances. Death a-hold 
of them, yet every man undaunted, not one losing his head, 
wringing out every cent of the pay before they sell their 

Custer (his hair cut short) stands in the middle with 
dilated eye and extended arm, aiming a huge cavalry pistol. 
Captain Cook is there, partially wounded, blood on the 
white handkerchief around his head, but aiming his carbine 
coolly, half kneeling (his body was afterwards found close 
by Custer's). The slaughtered or half-slaughtered horses, 
for breastworks, make a peculiar feature. Two dead Indians, 
lerculean, lie in the foreground clutching their Winchester 
rifles, very characteristic. The many soldiers, their faces 
and attitudes, the carbines, the broad-brimmed Western 
hats, the powder smoke in puffs, the dying horses with their 
rolling eyes almost human in their agony, the clouds of war- 
bonneted Sioux in the background, the figures of Custer and 
Cook, with, indeed, the whole scene, inexpressible, dreadful, 
yet with an attraction and beauty that will remain forever 
in my memory. With all its color and fierce action a cer- 
tain Greek continence pervades it. A sunny sky and clear 
light develop all. There is an almost entire absence of the 
stock traits of European war pictures. The physiognomy 
of the work is realistic and Western. 

I only saw it for an hour or so ; but needs to be seen many 
times — needs to be studied over and over again. I could 
look on such a work at brief intervals all my life without 
tiring. It is very tonic to me. Then it has an ethic pur- 
pose below all, as all great art must have. 

The artist said the sending of the picture abroad, prob- 
ably to London, had been talked of. I advised him if it 


went abroad to take it to Paris. I think they might appre- 
ciate it there — nay, they certainly would. Then I would, 
like to show Messieur Crapeau that some things can be done 
in America as well as others. 

Altogether, " Custer's Last Rally " is one of the very few 
attempts at deliberate artistic expression for our land and 
people, on a pretty ambitious standard and programme, thai 
impressed me as filling the bill. 


The sun shone from an azure sky 

On that eventful day, 
When Custer's band of troopers bold 

Rode forth in proud array ; 
With their loved chieftain in command 

No trooper on that field 
But what would face the cannon's mouth 

And life's red current yield. 

The soul of chivalry was he- 

He was their boast and pride ; 
Ofttimes they'd heard his clarion voice 

Where rolled the crimson tide. 
Ofttimes they'd made the brave advance 

Where gallant Custer led, 
On many a blood-stained battle-ground 

The legion brave had bled. 

Shrill sounds the reveille once more 

That balmy summer's morn, 
Its echoes wake o'er hill and dale 

On gentle zephyrs borne. 
Each heart beats in responsive note, 

Each heart beats high with glee, 
For fame and country, home and friends, 

And Custer's cavalry. 


"•Forward ! brave hearts !" the chieftain cried 

That balmy morn in June, 
" Fresh laurels gain, or cypress weave 

A wreath for warrior's tomb. 
Our duty calls, and life, how dear, 

Will not be spent in vain 
If laid down on the battle-field 

Among the noble slain." 

And slain they were, that gallant band, 

Before the setting sun ; 
Their spirits winged their mystic flight, 

Their sands of life had run. 
Not one was left to tell the tale— 

That legion bold and brave, 
Their life-blood laved the distant wilds, 

They found a warrior's grave. 

In numbers vast the savage horde 

Bore down in fiendish rage, 
And, ten to one, with leaden hail, 

Did Custer's boys engage. 
No earthly force could stand such odds ; 

No power stem the tide. 
They nobly fought as heroes do, 

They fought and bled and died. 

The chieftain's voice is hushed in death. 

The trooper's battle-cry 
No more shall make the welkin ring, 

Or enemy defy. 
They nobly lived and bravely died 

In honor, glory, fame. 
All hail ! the Seventh Cavalry, 

And Custer's honored name. 

My 8th, 1876. J. S. Cabvell. 

The above was written immediately after receiving the* 
news of the battle of the Little Big Horn. 




Upon the opposite page will be seen a true portrait of 
Bain-in-the-Face, the Indian that murdered General Custer. 
As will be seen in the fore part of this volume, he made it 
his special business to encourage all the hostiles within his 
reach and hearing to rally and mass in the valley of the 
Little Big Horn, under the leadership of Sitting BulL In 
previous history it has been clearly shown that he murdered 
Dr. Houtzinger, the veterinary surgeon of the 7th Cavalry, 
and Mr. Balarian, the sutler, while out with the great 
"Stanley expedition," in 1873. These murders were com- 
mitted on the north side of the Yellowstone Biver, nearly 
opposite the mouth of Tongue Biver, as well as opposite 
Fort Keogh, in Montana Territory, while Custer with his 
regiment was escorting a party of civil engineers making a 
preliminary survey along the present route of the Northern 
Pacific Railroad. 

The record of this Indian is very clearly stated in these 
pages up to the time he escaped from the guard-house at 
Fort Abraham Lincoln. We have positive knowledge that 
he then went deliberately and actively at work recruiting 
all the warriors within his reach and influence, under prom- 
ises that they certainly could either drive the " long-haired 
chief'' out of the country, or annihilate him and his cavalry 
entirely ; and well did he keep his word good. 

There is no question about his bringing reinforcements 
all the way from the southern camps and agencies of the 
Cheyennes, Arrappahoes, Kiowas and Comanches, all then 
located south of the southern boundary line of Kansas, aside 
from the recruiting that was done at the different camps and 
agencies in the whole Northwest ; and if Mr. Belknap, then 
Secretary of War, had paid less attention to his petty post- 
trading business, and tried to have informed himself in rela- 
tion to the movements of the hostile Indians on the western 
plains, and went to work to help organize the Fort Lincoln 
column of troops, and starting it out at the proper time and 




"without such great delay — and for no other purpose, only to 
give vent to his own personal spite against Custer, and to 
humiliate him in an official manner, just because he could do 
it, and on no other ground whatever only than " might makes 
light " — if he had paid any attention whatever to the move- 
ments of those southern Indians, and allowed General Terry 
to have moved at the proper time, there can be no doubt as 
to the result of that campaign. Custer with his three hundred 
men (most of whom would have been living to-day), and the 
Lincoln column, under General Terry, would have started 
at least one month earlier, and the southern warriors could 
not have arrived in time to have taken part in the battle. 

The writer knows whereof he speaks, because he was well 
and truly advised, as well as other western men, when the 
southern warriors crossed the Black Hills trail about one 
hundred miles north and east of Deadwood, and he also held 
communication, in private business matters, with Crook City 
and Deadwood every few days during that entire season ; 
hence we claim to have' had the best of facilities for obtain- 
ing facts concerning the movements of war-parties in that 
particular section of the country. Bain-in-the-Face remained 
with Sitting Bull most of the time after the Custer battle, 
and a greater portion of the time across the northern bound- 
ary line, but not as a distinguished chief or leader, further 
than the credit allowed him for rallying the Indian forces to 
meet Custer in such a short space of time, knowing very 
well that Custer was being kept back at Washington on the 
Belknap impeachment case, and he shrewdly seized this 
only opportunity to rally such a tremendous strong force, all 
of whom he knew to be veterans, anxious and blood-thirsty 
warriors. The Indians report him as not caring to go on the 
war-path since his retenge on Custer. During the fall of 
1880, while he was out on a buffalo hunt and mounting his 
horse, his gun was accidentally discharged, the ball taking 
effect in one of his knees, taking the cap of his knee entirely 
off, thus disabling him from active field service, and it is 
supposed that he surrendered much sooner on this account 
than he otherwise would have done had he not been crippled 
for life. During the winter of 1880-'81, the tribes he was 


with became disheartened, as others had before and since,, 
and finally came in to " Fort Keogh," and made a final sur- 
render. Some mischief-maker succeeded in making him be- 
lieve that the United States Court was about to have him 
arrested and tried for murder, and that he would no doubt 
be hung. This proved to be a source of great annoyance to 
him for many months, but the officers in charge of him soon 
set aside his fears by informing him that he would be treated 
as a prisoner of war. Early in the spring of '81 he was 
taken to the Standing Bock, where he remains quiet and 
harmless. He is 32 years of age, and has a round and strong 
healthy look, as will be seen by his portrait. It is quite 
probable he will not give the white people any more trouble 
farther than the issuing of the ten days' ration and his annu- 
ity goods twice each year, as is the custom. He is com- 
pelled to use a crutch when he walks, and no danger need 
be apprehended from him further than his secret counsel 
and influence might go among discontented warriors about 
to take the war-path, which will amount to but very little, 
as he cannot take an active part himself. 



A brief, fragmentary sketch of the history and personnel 
of the principal tribes who have been introduced to the 
Teader in the foregoing pages, may well serve as an appen- 
dix to this volume. 

The country on the Washita River and in and about the 
Wichita Mountains, as well as along the Canadian Eiver, is 
highly fertile and capable of sustaining a large population. 
The scenery is beautiful and the climate delightful The 
winters are mild and short ; grass is plentiful for the suste- 
nance of stock; timber is abundant; and the surrounding 
country at Wichita Mountains is well watered and unsur- 
passed for salubrity. 

The Wichitas were once a very numerous and warlike 
people, inhabiting the Wichita Mountains from time imme- 
morial Remains of their ancient villages and fortifications 
are yet plainly to be traced in this locality. They claim to 
have once held dominion over a very large extent of coun- 
try, from the junction of the Wichita (now Washita), with 
Red River, and extending westward to a line running due 
south from the headwaters of the Canadian to Red River. 
Their principal village was situated near the head of Rush 
Creek, a tributary of the Wichita, or Washita, where they 
lived for many years in peace and comparative comfort, 
raising abundant corn and vegetables, plentifully supplied 
with buffalo meat, and deriving a profitable income from 
trade with the Comanches of bows and arrows, for mules, 
horses and buffalo robes. In 1834 their village was removed 
to Cache Creek, in the Wichita Mountains, where for many 
years they remained undisturbed. These mountains are 
more properly peaks, surrounded by rich valleys, covered 
with luxuriant grasses and abounding in mineral wealth; 
buffalo, deer, antelope, bear, turkeys, grouse, quails and 
small game are plentiful Altogether a country better 
adapted to supply the physical wants of men and animals 


could not be found anywhere ; and here dwelt for many 
years these untaught children of nature, at peace with the 
world and with each other. 

In the year 1858 they became involved in difficulties with 
the Comanches, a wild, roving tribe of the plains, and 
through fear of them abandoned their pleasant village, never 
to return, and sought refuge and protection near Fort Ar- 
buckle, leading an unsettled life, until a few years previous 
to the breaking out of the war of the rebellion, when they 
were located near Fort Cobb. At the opening of the civil 
war they were again compelled to abandon their homes 
and remove to Kansas, remaining loyal to the government 
during the four years' conflict. After the close of the war 
they were returned to Fort Cobb, decimated by disease and 
hardships, and destitute of everything save the scanty sup- 
plies furnished them by the government. Dispirited, and 
despairing of ever again regaining their beautiful homes in 
the Wichita Mountains, where the bones of their ancestry 
had slumbered for ages, or of obtaining compensation for 
the loss of their lands or reward for their loyalty, they were 
unwilling to again improve their homes, until assured that 
they should remain in peaceable possession of them. 

Gen. W. B. Hazen, then Colonel of the 6th U. S. Infantry, 
was. in charge of the wild tribes by appointment of General 
Sherman, who had great confidence in his ability as an 
executive and administrative officer, and it may well be said 
that CoL Hazen justified the confidence of his superior offi- 
cer by proving himself efficient in every position that he 
held in the Indian Department. To him the discouraged 
Wichitas appealed for the justice that was the meed of their 
industry, thrift, and devotion to the government. To the 
Cheyennes, Kiowas, Comanches and Apaches, wild tribes of 
the plains, had been given land, and large sums of money 
were annually expended upon them. 

The Wichitas, of whom Gen. Hazen speaks as a peaceable 
and deserving band of Indians, had been given no land at 
all, and were there merely by sufferance, while the beautiful 
country to whose river and mountain they had given their 
own name, was in the possession of alien tribes. 


Previous to this time the aimless policy of the govern- 
ment toward the wild Indians had begun to assume definite 
shape, and a marked change for the better became apparent 
in the management of Indian affairs. 

During the summer of 1866, before the Union Pacific 
Railroad was built, Gen. Hazen was crossing the plains in 
an ambulance, and while riding along, giving some thought 
to the unsettled condition of Indian affairs, a plan suggested 
itself to him which was afterward approved by General 
Sherman. It was to allot a given amount of land to each 
tribe and compel them to live upon it ; to feed them and 
build houses for them ; to provide school-houses and teach- 
ers ; to furnish agricultural implements ; to teach them hus- 
bandry, and otherwise care for them until they should be- 
come self-sustaining. It was at Gen. Hazen 7 s suggestion 
that the wild tribes were sent south of the Arkansas River 
to locate on reservations. The Kiowas, Comanches, Chey- 
ennes and Arrapahoes then resided on the Arkansas and 
Smokey Rivers, ranging as far north as the Platte. 

In a council of the warriors held near Fort Dodge, Kan- 
sas, the war chiefs agreed to settle upon a reservation, but 
declared that they would not go unless they could have 
some one with whom they were acquainted to go with them 
to act a3 their agent. General Hazen at once sent for Colo- 
nel A. G. Boone, who had had many years of experience 
among wild tribes. The Indians consented to go if Colonel 
Boone would go with them. Their agency was then located 
near the base of the Wichita Mountains, about thirty miles 
north of the northern boundary line of Texas, and here the 
Kiowas and Comanches were finally settled, their new 
camps being called "Medicine Bluffs," and was generally 
known among the Indians as " Medicine Lodge Creek." 

The Cheyennes and Arrapahoes were located south of the 
Arkansas River, near the North Canadian — a fine location 
for a reservation, there being plenty of wood, water and 

These warriors subsequently proved troublesome ; so 
much so that a military post, called Fort Reno, was estab- 
lished there. The Indians in this section of the country 


Lave given the government much trouble, together with the 
wild Apaches, who mostly roam in New Mexico and Old 

In the meantime, Generals Sherman and Sheridan were 
active in their respective duties in trying to bring about a 
peaceful result that would be satisfactory to the general 
government and beneficial to the Indians. General Hazen 
and Colonel Boone were encouraged and supported in every 
manner possible within the compass of the offices of these 
two worthy military chiefs. Their presence had a good 
moral effect upon the Indians. The Indian chiefs well knew 
their power and influence. They respected them as brave 
soldiers — a characteristic of war chiefs. They named 
General Sherman, " the Big-White-Chief," and General 
Sheridan, " The-Little-Big-Short-Chief-that-Eides-Fast "— 
in reference to his famous twenty-mile-ride into Winchester, 
known in history and poetry as " Sheridan's Bide." And 
they well knew the famous black horse on which he then 
xode, as he rode the same horse seventy-five miles across 
the prairie in a single night, in order to catch them nap- 
ping, before daybreak in the morning. The war-chiefs often 
made kind inquiries after Sheridan, saying he was a brave 
soldier and a "heap-good-man." Occasionally one would 
-call him " Big-Hear t-with-a-Fast-Horse." 

Sheridan's plan with Indians determined to go on the 
war-path was invariably, " surround them and thrash them 
soundly " — but treat them well and kindly while they re- 
main on their reservations and behave themselves. 

General Sheridan is acknowledged by Western men to be 
not merely a good Indian fighter, but a good administration 
man in military affairs generally in the Western country. 
His immediate subordinate, General Alfred H. Terry, com- 
manding the Department of Dakota, is deserving of great 
credit for his management of the wild tribes in the North- 
west. He is a man of superior executive ability, and his 
honor and fidelity cannot be questioned. 

Colonel Boone has since held various honorable posi- 
e tions in the Interior Department, and has been employed 
in making treaties with some of the wild tribes who are 
located further north than those above mentioned. 


His course of conduct among wild Indians has always 
been that of pacification, his mode of treatment kind, and 
his rules and regulations very strict and impartial His 
health has now in great measure failed, and the Interior 
Department has lost a valuable servant. His. son-in-law, 
Lieut. -Colonel Elmer Otis, of the 7th 'Cavalry (Custer's for- 
mer position), is one of the most valuable and popular offi- 
cers on the frontier. 

The complications arising among the military officers in 
the Southern Indian District, in consequence of the famous 
" Battle of the Washita," are part of the history of the coun- 
try, and need not be here recapitulated. The military ope- 
rations in the Southwest, during 1368 and 1869, have been 
recorded at length in " Custer's Life on the Plains," which 
is still further supplemented by a pamphlet entitled, " Some 
Corrections of Life on the Plains," issued by General Hazen 
in 1875. 

To recount the history of military campaigns against these 
wild tribes, has not entered into the plan of this volume, 
whose object has been rather to give to the reader a cursoiy 
but correct view of the character and status of the Indians 
involved. At that date peace councils were in the ascend- 
ancy in Indian affairs, and General Hazen had been assigned, 
in the autumn of 1868, in the interest of the Peace Commis- 
sion, to the charge of all the wild Indians south of Kansas, 
comprising then the tribes above mentioned. 

General Hazen made an eloquent appeal to the govern- 
ment for the restoration of their rights to the displaced 
Wichitas, but the return of their lands was found to be im- 
possible, and they were provided for elsewhere. 

General Hazen and Colonel Boone were both remarkably 
successful in their treatment of the Indians and in their 
schemes for their welfare, so far as they were permitted to 
extend their authority. But at this juncture a new admin- 
istration came into power, and with the dawn of Grantism 
went out much that was calculated to improve and elevate 
the Indian. 

Little attention was paid to the qualifications, energy or 
trustworthiness of the incumbents of offices. Boom had to 


be made for a new set of officers, whether competent or in- 
competent, hence the agencies were turned over to a new 
class of men. It is proper to state, however, that many of 
the in-coming men made very good and efficient agents. It 
is proper to place proper credit where it belongs, and do 
injustice to no one. The Indians, however, became very 
uneasy, and greatly dissatisfied, at this change in their 
agents. They had become acquainted with General Hazen 
and Colonel Boone, and their administration had proved 
satisfactory to them, and this change no doubt led to the 
raids that were made into Texas during the following year. 
The new agents were good men enough, but the Indians 
were bound to become discontented at any frivolous reason 
that presented itself. So far as learned, it appears that 
when changes were to be made at Indian agencies, they were 
made with a sweeping hand, regardless of future conse- 
quences, and without any respect whatever to the qualifica- 
tions and behavior of the previous occupants. It seems that 
no more respect was shown to the occupants, than was 
shown by ex-Secretary of War Belknap to post traders, when 
he made his raid upon them, regardless of the trouble that 
might arise from such summary proceedings, among them- 
selves and their creditors generally. 

Orders were issued by the parties in power, just because 
they had the power to issue them, and for no other reason, 
as it has been clearly demonstrated that the question of 
right or wrong did not enter into their calculations at all 

Such conduct on the part of the high official^ of the 
country of course had its demoralizing effect upon the army 
officials throughout the West. They could not, conse- 
quently, look up to their leading civil officers with any feel- 
ing of respect, knowing, as they did, that they were degrad- 
ing their offices, and assigning them to duties that were 
designed but to aid in their cwn peculations. 

The Indians, of course, were but too well advised in re- 
gard to Belknap's sweeping orders among traders, as it 
drove away many who for years had been trading honorably 
among them. Some of the wily chiefs and warriors had 
named the Secretary of War " The-Heap-Big-Steal-'em- 


Chief." "He no good; he steal 'em all," was a frequent 
ejaculation. Thus, even the Indians shared with the brave 
little army of the frontier in the demoralizing effects of the 
short-sighted policy of the War Department, and divided 
with its officers the contempt with which they regarded the 
selfish, dishonest head of the War Department. Indians, 
as a rule, are shrewd traders, especially when they have an 
equal chance with white men. In those days they would 
nick-name the trader "Steal-Chief," on account of his hold- 
ing his appointment under Belknap. 

No less demoralized were the Indians in the Northwest, 
particularly along the Upper Missouri, when President 
Grant made his tyrannical orders and changes. Old Indian 
traders of good standing were removed without cause, and 
for no reason but to make room for a lot of petty politicians 
from Philadelphia, who were merely subordinates to aid 
Orville Grant, a brother of the President, in his unhallowed 
schemes of legalized plunder. 

Indian reservations were extended regardless of the pro- 
tests of old settlers and squatters, whose rights were utterly 
ignored — all for no other purpose than to increase the do- 
main and, consequently, the profits of the newly-appointed 

If an old trader was allowed to hold his position at all, 
it was in consideration of paying the newly-appointed trader 
a stipulated sum. When first approached for negotiations 
upon the subject, the newly-appointed trader would invari- 
ably say, " We will see Orville Grant about it ; you know 
he fixes things." 

Such open dishonesty on the part of the high officials of 
the nation naturally had a very great tendency to demoral- 
ize the already discontented and half-tamed warriors. 
Small wonder, then, that they demanded of the government 
better treatment for themselves. Nor was it to be wondered 
at that they often made declarations and direct charges 
against the whites that their hunting-grounds and buffalo 
were being stolen, and dishonest traders forced upon them, 
to rob their squaws and papooses in the regular way of 
trade. There is no question in regard to the Indians losing 


what little confidence they ever did have in the general 
government, after these high-handfcd operations in and 
about their agencies. 

More than one warrior became disgusted with this pre- 
viously unheard-of management, and left his tepee in charge 
of the old men and women, and took to flight on his fleet 
pony to join Sitting Bull's camp. There is no doubt among 
Western men, who are well informed in frontier matters, 
that this disgraceful management was the cause of swelling 
Sitting Bull's ranks in the campaign of 1876, so well known 
throughout the country as " Custer's last battle." 

The evil results of the example of such unprincipled deal- 
ing on the part of the government before the eyes of the 
savages were greatly to be deplored. The Indians had 
always been promised good treatment and fair dealing in 
trade, if they would leave the war-path, forsake their wild 
habits, and become a good and peaceful people. The author 
does not pretend to say that the Indians were in the least 
justifiable in going on the war-path on account of the bad 
treatment received from the high and dignified officials of 
the land, yet it is a fact beyond question, that the average 
Indian is very sensitive in regard to the treatment he 
receives, his mind being quite clear upon subjects with 
which he is acquainted, and his only recourse against injust- 
ice, or what he may consider dishonest or unfair treatment 
on the part of the whites, is to go on the war-path and seek 
revenge in bloodshed for his real or fancied wrongs, just as 
Bain-in-the-Face joined the hostile forces of Sitting Bull, to 
avenge his treatment at the hands of General Custer, in 
being arrested and held a prisoner in the post guard-house 
at Fort A. Lincoln, during the winter of 1875, not many 
months before Custer's last battle. Bevenge for wrongs in- 
flicted upon himself or his race, is the first article in the 
Indian's moral creed, hence it is fair to presume that he will 
carry a revengeful spirit in his bosom, until its consuming 
fires are quenched by a higher civilizing influence than any 
yet applied to him, and until he is thoroughly subjugated 
and made to obey the laws and regulations of our common 


Since the last administration came into power in 1877, 
there has been a decided improvement in Indian affairs, and 
the Indians themselves report progress among their respec- 
tive tribes in a measure beyond their anticipation. 

One cause of this marked change for the better is attribu- 
table to the non-interference of the President with the Sec- 
retary of the Interior. Another is found in the fact that 
Secretary Schurz, while faithful to all the several divisions 
of his department, gave to the Indian service his special 
attention. His eminent services in the West, and through- 
out the Indian country are highly appreciated by the best 
class of citizens, and also by those highly competent judges 
of human nature, the Indians themselves, some of whom 
were on the war-path only a few years ago, and some but a 
few months ago. It is to be hoped the present administra- 
tion will adopt the same line of policy and continue it on 
the same plan as that laid down by the one just closed. It 
is the general belief in the circle of business men who are 
more or less interested in Indian matters, that Secretary 
Schurz has proved himself a most admirable statesman, and 
is entitled to great credit from all parties, as well as to the 
hearty thanks of the nation at large for his efficient admin- 
istration of the most difficult department of the government. 
In 1872 it was this same Carl Schurz who had the " audacity 
and impudence," as it was then called, to break ranks from 
the administrative party then in power, and take the stump 
throughout the country, to state the facts in regard to the 
frauds and mismanagements that then generally prevailed 
throughout the different departments of the government. 

He was bitterly denounced for so doing by certain officials 
who still clung to the Belknap idea of " Rule or Ruin," and 
was hissed at as a backslider from the Republican party, 
and a demoralizer of good government; but, four years 
later, the truth of his accusations stood revealed, and a Re- 
publican President placed him in charge of one of the most 
important departments of our government, " The Depart- 
ment of the Interior." His official career closed on the 4th 
of March, 1881, with honor to himself and great credit to 
the administration, whose schemes of reform he had so 
largely aided. The Indians especially regarded him with 


favor. In their own language they styled him, " The-heap- 
good-white-Chief," and were often heard to say, that they 
wished he could remain longer in charge of their affairs. It 
it true that Secretary Schurz did not at all times move har- 
moniously with the military officials, but the author believes 
he is correct in saying that the general management of the 
government business and operations by both the Military 
and Interior Departments on the frontier has been, in gen- 
eral, satisfactory in its final results. The small army assign- 
ed to the protection of the frontier is mostly composed of 
veterans, and commanded by skilled and conscientious offi- 
cers, as the country is well aware. Well-advised border 
men are unanimously of the opinion that by the discreet and 
thoughtful management of the latter, settlers and immi- 
grants are now quite safe from attacks by marauding bands 
of hostile Indians. 

From the first origin of the government the Indian prob- 
lem has puzzled the wisest heads of the nation, nor has a 
correct solution of the difficult question been yet arrived at. 
It is doubtful if it can be settled in the present generation, 
although the efforts of philanthropists and humanitarians 
throughout the country, in conjunction with the powerful 
machinery of the United States government, are put forth 
constantly to that end. 

The author has not presumed to propose a remedy for ex- 
isting ills, but if he has in these pages thrown any light upon 
the vexed question, if, from the impressions made upon his 
mind during long residence among this " peculiar people," 
and thoughtful observation of their habits and character, as 
recorded in this unpretending volume, or if he has added 
anything to the popular knowledge of these " nomads of the 
plains," or shed any light upon their feelings and situation, 
by which to indicate a more enlightened treatment of these 
unhappy people in the future, then is his mission as an 
author accomplished. 

In closing this work, we must express bur kind thanks to 
Professor O. S. Goff, at Bismarck, D. T., for his promptness 
in placing in our hands the photo of " Chief Sitting Bull " 
in time for this edition, as it not only enables the writer to 
keep his promise made elsewhere, but the readers get full 


as good a likeness, and the features and general expression 
Are even better than we expected to get, on account of the 
sullenness of the old chief since his surrender. But we are 
Teally entitled to the best that could be taken, as he charged 
an even one hundred dollars for the negative. So it ap- 
pears that the chief intends to make his face pay him dol- 
lars, as well as his words and big talk. He charges two 
dollars apiece for writing his autograph for men and boys, 
but writes it free of charge for the ladies. Little did the 
old chief think while in the hands of Professor Goff at 
" Standing Rock Agency," that his photo would be in the 
hands of an engraver in New York City within the space of 
four days. 

The author now begs leave to call special attention to the 
contents of his next book, as appears on the following pages, 
entitled, " The "Western Blue Book ; or, Scenes of Savage 
Life," which will be ready about the first of October. 
44 The Blue Book " will give a panoramic and dramatic view 
of our military operating against the hostiles, all the way 
from the wild Apache camps in Old Mexico to the fastnesses 
in the woody mountains in the North ; and it is our aim to 
give a faithful portrayal of actual scenes of our modern In- 
dian warfare, as has been carried on against the various 
tribes all along our Western frontier ; also in regard to the 
treatment and management of the leading war-chiefs, after 
they have either been captured by our forces or themselves 

The author has had fourteen years of continuous experi- 
ence among the military and untamed savages on the frontier, 
and feels quite competent to do even justice to both subjects 
and readers, and very confidently claims in advance of pub- 
lication that " Fanatanza " and " Col. La Raine " will be two 
of the best productions of the kind that have ever been placed 
before the American people. The author most respectfully 
asks you to read the " Blue Book," and give your opinion 
without fear or favor. Nicely bound in blue cloth, 16mo, 
$1.50, and will be for sale by wholesale booksellers gene- 
rally; also news-agents and canvassers throughout the 
country. For particulars address " The Author," P. O. Box 
87, Brooklyn, N. T. 







Fanatanza; A Sketch of Savage Life. 

Chapteb I. — A Quiet Home in Texas Raided by a Band 

of Apache Warriors. 

Chapteb II. — Return of the Warriors, and a Pow-Wow 

over the Capture* of Mrs. Sparks. 

Chapteb III. — The Wild Apache Chief with Mrs. Sparks 

and his Red Wife. 

Chapteb TV. — Warriors Return from a Raid into Old Mex- 
ico with Fanatanza.— The Murder of 
Mrs. Sparks. 

Chapteb V; — General Van Couvnor's Headquarters at 

Fort Washita. 

Chapteb VI. — Three Kiowa Chiefs Engaged to help Ran- 
som " Fanatanza." 

Chapteb VII. — The Chiefs Return to General Van Couvnor 

at Fort Washita. 

Chapteb VEIL — California John warns Genera* Van Couv- 
nor of the Situation. 


Chapter IK. — General Van Couvnor takes the Field. 
Chapter X. — Fanatanza Surrendered by the Wild Apache 

Chapter XL — Correspondent of the Eastern Press Arrives 

at Fort Washita. 
Chapter XIL — Kiowa Chiefs Demand Money in Advance 

for the Ransom of Fanatanza. 
Chapter XEEL — Walker's Trading Store among the Wild 

Kiowas and Comanches, in the Wichita 

Chapter XTV. — General Van Couvnor Receives Fanatanza. 

The Wild Apache Chief Highly Amused 

at the " Round Dance." 

section n. 

Court Scene at an Indian Agency. 

Chapter L — A Quaker Agent sits as Chief Justice. 
Chapter LL — Appendix to the Court Scene at a Kiowa. 



Right op Way to the Gold Fields; or, A Female Lobbyist 

in Washington. 


Chapter L — Office of the Midland Pacific Railroad — 

President and Directors' Room. 

Chapter IL — After Dinner. — Arrival of the Lobbyists 

and the leading Chiefs of the Indian 

Chapter ILL — Hotel de Villa in Washington. 



Col. La Eaine ; or, The Warrior's Revenge. 

Chapter I. — General Waldstien, Commanding the North- 
west, Headquarters in St. Paul. 

Chapter II. — Scene near Pompey's Pillar, on the Yel- 

Chapter HE. — An Indian Dance and Grand Pow-Wow at 

Standing Rock Agency, "Wild Eagle the 
Centre Figure. 

Chapter IV. — Col. La Raine Sends a Troop of Cavalry 

to Capture Wild Eagle. 

Chapter V. — Capture of Wild Eagle, the Murderer of 

Col. La Raine. 

Chapter VI. — Col. La Raine Receives Wild Eagle at 

Fort Stonewall. 

Chapter VEL — Friends of Wild Eagle Visit Him while in 

the Guard-house ; Medicine-Man Inter- 

Chapter VTII. — Grain Thieves Escape ; also the Revenge- 
ful Warrior. 

Chapter IX. — Col. La Raine Receives the Report from 

the Guard-house. 

Chapter X. — Walker's Trading Establishment, near Fort 

Stonewall, on the Missouri River. 

Chapter XL — Officers' Club-room at Fort Stonewall ; the 

Day before Col. La Raine takes the 

Chapter XTT. — Col. La Raine's Headquarters, within 

Three Hours' March of Sitting Bull's 

Chapter XDX — Col. La Raine's last Sleep, the Night be- 
fore his last Battle with Sitting Bull. 

Chapter XIV. — His last Battle and the lost Battle-field. 


Genebal Waldstten; or, the Surrender of Crow King, 
Chief Warrior of Sitting Bull's Tribes. 

Chapter L — Headquarters of General Waldstien, at 

Fort Buford. 

Chapter EL — The General in the Field ; Crow King Sur- 

Chapter IIL — Trader's Store at Fort Buford. 

Chapter IV. — Crow King makes his formal Surrender, and 

has a Peace Dance. 



The Author is informed that certain parties are about to 
Kt pirate and dramatize " certain sections of the above con- 
tents for their own benefit, and he hereby announces that 
lie will prosecute any buccaneer who infringes upon his 
copyright, to the full extent of the law, as all his produc- 
tions are copyrighted according to act of Congress. 






T. J. 'Mitchell, 

Mandan^ D. T. 


Bttmareky D. T: 






A Choice selection of Foreign and Domestic goods con- 
stantly on hand. 





gent t 

&iSMsi®@m, &.t. 




(Seats' Ifine ffttrnisliittjg (Siwds* 

Orders Filled Promptly and Satisfaction Guaranteed. 

45 Main Street, BISMARCK. D. T. 


em nxxA %v&t ©petted, 

Only Half Block from N. P. Depot, 
C - W - F £^U BISMARCK, D.T. 


sician and Surgeon, 


Residence— No. 34 NORTH THIRD STREET, 


WALTER MANN, St. Paul, Prest. 


4|irsi ^jfattanal ^jjjmift off "J(|imt|arck t 





Correspondents, - - -} first national bank, Chicago. 



:mxan.-A,2$raos3 oit ett:r,oi»:hj. 



MISMsiS€M 9 B. T. 

§B61 P10PL 


Stoves & Hardware 


Manufacturer of all kinds of Tin and Sheet 

Iron Ware; also, 






1872. DUNN & CO., 188L 


Orders from abroad receive prompt attention. 







|oiml grocer and {jrai$M jjeritynil 


Special attention paid to consignments of 
Butter, Eggs, and all kinds produce. 


BOIS, FAT k CONZEY, Chioago, 111., and ANTHONY KELLY, Minneapolis, Mfan T 

D. J. BAILEY & CO., 





.rat iat lwt»tii 

Agents for the John Deere Plow Works, 



Roonas Airy and well Furnished. 'Busses run 

froin tliis House to all Trains and Steamboats ; 

Also Stages leave daily for Forts Stevenson, 

Bertliold, Buford, Lincoln, Yates & Sully. 



Every citizen in America nhr>t»lil rerul 




3 2044 019 925 882 





. .IAN « 55